When hemmed in by technology challenges, businesses deserve a process that ensures communication, transparency and success from discovery to implementation and beyond. With a strong background in sales and technology, Steve Brunker knows how to overcome objections and meet the challenges his clients face on a daily basis. Steve’s transition from computer sales to becoming an expert leader in information technology (IT) was an interesting journey, full of excitement and learning.
It All Started at a Computer Company
In high school, Steve had a strong passion for electronics and always knew he would pursue his degree in electrical engineering. Once enrolled at Northwestern University, he was surprised to find that it wasn’t the classes in electrical engineering that gave him the most excitement; it was all of his courses in computer science. He enjoyed computer sciences so much that he decided to combine his studies and take courses in electronics as well as computer programming.
After college, Steve used his degree to secure a position with a well-known computer company, Hewlett Packard (HP). He thought it would be the perfect company to hone his skills in electronics and computer programming and gain real-world experience in a computer lab. But HP had other plans.
Selling His Way Up the Corporate Ladder
Twenty years ago, Steve remembers going into his interview at Hewlett Packard expecting to come away with a job working in a computer lab. Instead, he landed a role in computer sales after being persuaded by the interview team that it would be a better fit. As it turns out, they were right. Steve loved getting out and meeting with business clients to learn everything about their computer problems and enjoyed using his knowledge of computer programming to provide swift, efficient resolutions.
As Steve worked his way up the corporate ladder at HP, he developed close business relationships and expanded his network. This ultimately led to an introduction to the owner of a manufacturing company in Cincinnati, Ohio, who happened to be on the hunt for the company’s first CIO to integrate their technology across all of their locations in the country. Shortly after this chance meeting, Steve waved goodbye to computer sales and jumped into his new role as CIO of a manufacturing company and the world of IT.
The Making of a CIO (and Avid Scuba Diver?)
Who knew that with all of those unexpected twists and turns, Steve Brunker’s 20-year career path would ultimately lead him from sales to being on the buyers’ side of the table? Steve never would have envisioned himself as a CIO all those years ago, but he wouldn’t change a thing about his journey to get here. He’s wiser because of it.
When asked what advice he would give to anyone following in his footsteps or newly stepping into the role of a CIO, Steve says, “Careers in IT have divided into two streams: One stream being a path of specialization and the other path being an IT generalist. Neither path is wrong. Choose the one that’s right for you and excel at it.”
Outside of work, Steve maintains his childhood hobby of scuba diving, proudly receiving his certification at the early age of 12. He shares this passion with his wife and children and loves finding new beaches to explore with his family.
Steve is a close friend of Afidence, and we have partnered with him in the past. To learn more about how Afidence can manage all of your IT and cybersecurity needs, contact us.