The Axonius Employee Spotlight is a Q&A series dedicated to shining a much-deserved light on the movers and shakers building the fastest growing cybersecurity company ever. You can read past Employee Spotlights here.
This month, we’re spotlighting Christopher Phillips, Director of Technical Account Management. A remote employee based out of Florida, Chris joined Axonius in March 2020.
Linor Shust: Tell us a bit about your career path before Axonius. What did you do? What critical moments got you to where you are today?
Chris Phillips: I started out as a network engineer for a MSP, and quickly realized I had a passion for the security side of things. Jumping in with both feet, I eventually lead the security operations team for a large financial firm.
I missed forging relationships with customers from my time with the MSP, however, so I pivoted into technical account management, where I could use my technical background and still have the opportunity to work directly with the customer.
After leading a TAM team for a popular vulnerability management platform, I happily came here to Axonius!
Linor: What about Axonius made you interested in working here?
Chris: The industry problem of correlating assets between all our tools and identifying the gaps was something my team greatly struggled with when I led security operations. We even attempted to build our own poorly made “Axonius” tool.
Needless to say, I immediately could relate to our product. After meeting the team, I knew Axonius was where I wanted to work.
Linor: What are some of the things that you and your team are responsible for?
Chris: I think my team has the most exciting role here at Axonius. We are 100 percent focused on making sure our customers get the most out of our platform. We help them develop use cases and automations tailored to their environment, provide advanced training for their teams, help implement new features, and work with the customer on any new features they would like to see added.
Linor: What’s a favorite project you’ve worked on or career milestone you’ve achieved while working at Axonius?
Chris: That would have to be getting the opportunity to really define and build out what the technical account management team is here at Axonius. The dedicated TAM team here is relatively new, and there is so much we have already put in place in a short amount of time.
We have grand plans on how we want to continue making the customer experience better going forward, so this is only the beginning.
Linor: What advice can you offer to someone looking to take on a role similar to yours?
Chris: To be a successful TAM or lead a team of TAMs, I truly believe you have to love working with the technology just as much as you love working with people and building strong relationships. It is a tight blend of both. If you are passionate about both, you will succeed.
Linor: If someone reading was interested in joining Axonius, what should they know about working here?
Chris: I joke all the time that joining Axonius and becoming an “Axonian” is like joining a cult. I am always talking about what we are doing and about the company to all my friends and family. I can't stop! It is a culture like no other here, and I love it.
Rapid Fire Q&A
Linor: Ok, now for some fun! I’m going to ask you a series of “rapid fire” questions about yourself, to help our readers get to know you a bit better.
First one! When you log on in the morning, what do you tackle first?
Chris: First thing is always a quick review of email and calendar, then making a prioritized list for the day.
Linor: What helps you focus?
Chris: Video game instrumental music... and coffee.
Linor: How do you organize your day to stay productive?
Chris: Everyday I make a prioritized list of “must do”, “should do”, and “nice to do” items.
Linor: How do you deal with stress?
Chris: Start everyday with an early morning workout.
Linor: Any hobbies outside of work?
Chris: Board games, blade smithing, woodworking, traveling, and video games.
Linor: Favorite way to spend your weekends?
Chris: On the boat, island hopping with my future wife and our pups.
Linor: Do you drink coffee? How do you take it?
Chris: YES! Black, usually from an aeropress or french press.
Linor: What's the last great book you read?
Chris: “The Iron Druid Chronicles” series, which I read this past summer. It's a fiction series I got absolutely lost in. I think I read all nine books in three months. I love old mythology and this weaves its way through all of them.