When the odds are against you, there are two roads you can take:
1. Buy into the negativity and become a self-fulfilling prophecy or
2. Persevere to rise above the adversity and exceed everyone’s expectations.
When Cisco joined the server party several years ago and set out to design a new system that addressed our customer’s power, management, and server administration costs challenges, the cynics said, “It couldn’t be done.”
Then, when Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS), a new system that blended compute, network, storage access and virtualization into a single unit, was announced two years ago, skeptics predicted that it would never succeed.
Now, less than two years after UCS first shipped in July 2009, Cisco holds the third position in global market share in x86 blade server factory revenue as of Q1 CY11, according to the IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker, May 2011. Furthermore, businesses worldwide shifted over 10% of the x86 blade market to UCS, and in the U.S. nearly 20%, as mentioned in Cisco’s Vice President of Server Access and Virtualization Business Unit Soni Jiandani’s blog post.
This information comes on the heels of last week’s exciting announcement, Cisco UCS B250 M2 Blade Server won the “Best of Show” award in the Hardware and Storage category at Microsoft TechEd 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.
I’ll let you guess which road Cisco took to beat the odds.
We couldn’t have done it…without our partners! Read More »
Two years ago, we started something that many in the industry said was crazy. We delivered a new system that united compute, network, storage access and virtualization into one cohesive system. There was rampant speculation that Cisco had taken a crazy path to doom and destruction.
Blades are forecast to be the fastest growing segment of the x86 server market** and market data illustrates the impact of UCS innovation: businesses worldwide shifted over 10% of the x86 blade market to UCS, and in the U.S. nearly 20%. Cisco’s rapid growth underscores our leadership in the industry transition to fabric computing and converged infrastructure. On our most recent earnings call, Cisco reported 5,400 UCS customers and an annualized order run rate of $900M for UCS product orders.
As we began our design efforts, we knew we couldn’t set out to design simply another server. We heard from our customers that power, management, and server administration costs were sapping their budgets, leaving few resources for innovation. So we included customers in R&D sessions to help us design from the ground up an evolutionary new system that integrated networking and management: flexible and scalable enough to handle any workload. We aimed to create the ideal, programmable, platform for virtualized and cloud environments, and to help solve many of the very real challenges they faced.
Today’s market share news demonstrates our approach is taking hold. But this is just the beginning: we are committed to evolving UCS and delivering continued technology innovation. Thanks for joining us on this journey – we have leagues more innovation ahead of us. ***
* IDC Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker, May 2011
** IDC Q4 CY10 Server Forecaster
*** If you’d like to learn more, below you’ll find additional information on UCS milestones, product awards and customer comments
Two nights ago, I had the pleasure of attending Opportunity Now’s 2011 Awards Gala Dinner at the Brewery, Chiswell St London. Over 500 guests came together to recognise excellent practices within organisations that are creating equal, diverse and inclusive workplaces, with a particular focus on gender.
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Ed Daly, Director Market Management and Pete Davis, Manager, Market Management, in our Cisco Services US Field Marketing Team recently encountered a marketing dilemma -- a dilemma I’m sure most marketers can relate to. Fresh from winning a couple of prestigious awards, Pete and Ed wanted to tell the world, but were told by PR that awards are something that are not exactly “press release worthy”. As we all do, when we’ve experienced rejection, Ed and Pete did a bit of soul searching on the need for marketers to promote awards. The result is this tongue-in-cheek post. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Oh -- by-the-way, that’s Pete in the photo with the awards in question.
“We don’t do press releases for awards.” “No one cares about awards except marketing people.” “We don’t have enough budget.” Have you ever heard this from the PR team when you’ve won an industry award that you’re really proud of? You want to shout from the nearest rooftop how cool it is, but you keep getting told no. You’re not alone. The Cisco Services marketing team won two IT Services Marketing Association (ITSMA) for the Accelerate services training and Smart Care partner enablement programs..
The Smart Care program won the 2010 Gold Award for Marketing Excellence in the category of Developing and Launching New Offerings. The Accelerate Services Training program won the 2010 Diamond Award for Marketing Excellence in the category of Enabling Sales. This is the first time that Cisco has scooped both a Diamond (first place) and Gold (second place) Award and only the second ever time that we have won a Diamond Award.
When we approached the PR team to publicize the win externally, we were given the standard answer, a double whammy in this instance “We don’t do press releases for awards, and no one but marketing cares about awards anyway”. So we decided to do some soul searching to understand why we feel so compelled to boast about having won these awards…and why no one else seemed to get it.
And here’s what we came up with.
Top 10 Reasons Why Marketing People Like to Promote Awards They Win:
10. Standing in the middle of the office shouting “look at me, look at me” wasn’t going down very well.
9. You know, fake it till you make it.
8. Sales is where the rubber meets the road, but marketing is where the rubber meets the sky.