In the spirit of the U.S. Presidential campaign season where candidates must differentiate themselves from other candidates…and, on occasion, unfortunately, “go negative” to highlight what they believe voters should know about their opponents, I offer you this Q&A with Juniper CEO Scott Kriens by Mark Boslet of the San Jose Mercury News.Kriens states the following: “The highest priority for the company is our own employees. By contrast, we don’t say it is the customer or it’s the investor. If we make a priority out of making employees successful – the deal in return is that we get a commitment to reach the objectives that are the responsibility of that person.”Correct me if I’m wrong, but you don’t have any employees if you don’t have customers or investors, right? Juniper is a good company and has been a good competitor to Cisco, but I think their CEO may have misspoken a bit here. At Cisco, we know that we don’t (as employees) exist without customers, which is why they are our top priority. Employees and Shareholders round out our top three most important constituents, but customers are definitely #1. This is why our bonuses are based on customer satisfaction.On the campaign front, congratulations to Senator Obama and Governor Huckabee. And, not to pooh-pooh their Iowa victories, but I think that all major candidates still remain viable past New Hampshire. Elections have gotten more national and as important as Iowa and New Hampshire are in the nominee selection process, I think that other states have more of a say now in who is their party’s candidate. We shall see if I’m right on that front.