John Pepper, 44, started outsourced IT services provider Managed 24/7 in 2009 after selling his previous business. In 2015 the company opened a new Milton Keynes site where it can track up to 1bn devices to predict the failure of IT and telecoms applications on behalf of its clients. It ranked at No 48 in the 2016 Sunday Times Tech Track 100.
What inspired you to start your business?
It’s what I do – I start tech businesses and grow them. I like creating brands, culture, a place where people want to work, and winning customers.
What has been your biggest challenge?
Getting the right independent advice, which means finding people who can work with you as an entrepreneur, rather than trying to sell things to you.
What has been your best business decision?
It was the realisation that we needed to automate our business, and then to create our own software in-house.
What has been your worst business decision?
In the past, I didn’t take decisions quickly enough.
Which business leader would you most like to share a meal with, and why?
John Chambers, chairman and former chief executive of Cisco. He is a visionary.
What company do you most admire, and why?
Amazon. They deliver exceptional service excellence through no service. Have you ever tried to call Amazon? They show what can be done with automation.