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The Evolution of the #ConnectedFan

I love sports—playing, watching, you name it. But the sports experience has changed so much over the past few years, in new and exciting ways, which makes being a fan or being a player more dynamic – and way more fun.

Growing up playing basketball, we’d play the game, feed off our fans’ energy and cheers, celebrate when we won, and then challenge the next team!

But today, fans are tweeting messages to their favorite players and players are wearing sensors to track their performance—it’s a whole new ballgame. With the transitions we’ve seen in mobile, cloud and the Internet of Everything (IoE), so much has changed—and will continue to change—how we engage with our favorite teams.

I’d even venture to say that the fan-player relationship is now personal. You used to be able to only enjoy a game at the stadium where it was being played, or by listening to the radio or watching TV. You certainly couldn’t share your thoughts on the game with the players playing, except by screaming at them – or the TV.

Innovations in streaming video, live broadcasting and social media, have made today’s experience radically different. Wi-Fi-enabled sports arenas, combined with the huge expansion in mobile capabilities, mean that fans can watch the game live, watch on TV, or via an app on their smart device. Anyone out there like watching the hoop cam during a game?

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Cisco Partner Summit Day 3: That’s a Wrap

With day one and day two of Cisco Partner Summit complete Bruce Klein, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Partner Organization opened day three  by recapping the amazing parties from the night before, with EMEAR taking top honors for best party this year.

We got the chance to catch up with partners to hear their perspectives on today’s General Session. Here’s what they had to say:

Read on for a full recap of day three of Cisco Partner Summit.  Read More »

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Cisco Partner Summit 2013: Looking Back, and Ahead

It’s been a great Cisco Partner Summit season, and we’re excited to continue the momentum – and the vigorous partner and customer discussion – at Cisco Live in Orlando next week and throughout Cisco’s upcoming fiscal year 2014.

The final presentation of Partner Summit, on Day 3, came from Chuck Robbins, SVP, Worldwide Field Operations, so we thought it fitting to get Chuck’s takeaways for partners as we wrap up our coverage of Partner Summit here on the Channels blog. Chuck’s a true channel guy – he came up through the channel territory manager ranks and many partners got to know him well when he was U.S. and Canada channel chief years ago. Chuck told partners from the stage that “you can believe that I’ll continue to be your advocate inside Cisco.”

Let’s hear a little bit more about what Chuck wants partners to keep in mind:

Read on for a final lookback at the Partner Summit season that was.  Read More »

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Cisco Partner Summit Day 3: ‘We Are Absolutely Committed to You’

It’s hard to believe that the 17th Cisco Partner Summit is nearly in the books. It’s been a great week, both here in Boston and throughout our Virtual Partner Summit environment, and the buzz from partners has been as strong and steady as ever.

Day 1 of Partner Summit focused on Cisco’s vision, business transformation and the evolution of the channel. Day 2 covered the unique value proposition of Cisco’s technology, architectures and services. Today’s closing General Session punctuated Cisco’s stated commitment to partners, and that it’s together with partners that Cisco will become the world’s No. 1 IT company.

Today’s speaker lineup brought special guest Mark C. Thompson, CEO and co-founder of Virgil Unite Mentors, and, to close, Chuck Robbins, SVP, Worldwide Field Operations.

Throughout Partner Summit we’ve been hearing from you, our partners, about what you’re taking away from your time at the event. A few of you shared some closing thoughts with us today:

Read on for a closer look at Partner Summit Day 3. Read More »

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Wendy Bahr to Lead Cisco’s Americas Partner Organization

Today, I’d like to thank an old friend and welcome back a familiar face.

Jim Sherriff, the leader of the Americas Partner Organization and previously the US and Canada Partner Organization for the past two years, has accepted a new role working with Rob Lloyd on the Worldwide Sales Operations team.

Among other responsibilities, Jim will lead our global efforts to bring greater capabilities and efficiency to our sales process by assuming sales leadership for ACT (Accelerated Cisco Transformation). ACT is Cisco’s multi-year program to fuel growth by enhancing our operating model, ensuring world-class execution, efficiency, and ease of doing business. Jim will report directly to Rob Lloyd.

The Americas Partner Organization has made great strides in driving partner profitability under Jim’s direction through three key areas of focus: enabling partners to capture new markets faster, increasing customer segment impact, and driving improved operational efficiency.

Jim and his team initiated and led the “the 1% solution,” a series of initiatives to improve operational efficiency with early successes including the Audit Certification team that helps partners reduce the cost of re-certification, and introduction of The SELL (Sales Enablement Learning Lifecycle), a valuable resource for our partners to help them on-board and develop their sales professionals.

I’d like to thank him for his exceptional leadership and many contributions. He will be a great advocate for The Americas sales organization in his new role.

With Jim’s move to Worldwide Operations, I’m pleased to announce Wendy Bahr as our new SVP, Americas Partner Organization.

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