john bentley, ii

When John was 10 years old, the most amazing thing happened. His father (aka John 1) brought home a TRS-80 Color Computer and together the learned how to program. Dad, being an engineer by training and nature, methodically went chapter by chapter, learning each skill in turn. John (aka John2) would go to his dad after each chapter and ask him what he had learned. John2 would then skim the book, take the concept and expand upon it, marking him as in "intuitve programmer", also known as a hacker in the traditional sense.

John was hooked. He continued programming the TRS-80 and joined the local BBS community. John's dad got him access to early IBM PCs through his work and purchase one of the first IBM PCs to be used in a home. John continued to develop skills throughout junior high and high school, and attended North Carolina State University in the Computer Science program.

At NCSU, John was introduced to the open systems movement with Unix, X Windows, and Motif. He also learned object-oriented technology. But the most lasting impression was his work experience. He began working at IBM his second semester of school and came to realize that he grealty enjoyed working in a professional environment and that his natural technical ability could earn him a living.

After graduating from NCSU, John migrated to technology consulting where he had two key experiences that would shape his career and life. In an early engagement, a consultant from another organization influenced a project in the wrong direction. The consultant succeeded not by technical knowledge but communication skills. From that point forward, John focused on building leadership and communication skills to ensure the best path would be followed in the future, whether it was his or someone else's.

During this time, John had a second key experience. When on a project, he needed to build an administration guide. For the first time, John had a business need for a computer - creating a document - rather than a technical one. From that time forward, John was able to align technology with business need.