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I Chose Cisco Because . . .

Why Cisco? What’s so great about working here? Why do people come in every day to innovate and change the world?

Let’s ask Cisco employees! Let’s even ask Cisco leaders!

Today kicks off an employee contest on Instagram (Follow us there!) It’s named (and tagged) #IChoseCisco. That way, employees can tell the world why they chose Cisco. Maybe it’ll inspire a new crop of talent to apply! The contest runs through August 13th. Full rules for employees here.

How does it work? It’s an employee-only contest to enter, but everyone can vote for their favorites with an Instagram like! (The more likes, the better chance that employee has to win the contest!) Employees: Post a photo on Instagram, use the hashtag #IChoseCisco and tag Life at Cisco on Instagram for a chance to win prizes. Everyone else: Follow the Instagram account, and like your favorites to help them out!

There are special white boards in some offices where you can write in your answer and Instagram your photo. For those around the world, there’s a PDF sheet to print out and use (but neither of these is a requirement – there are some creative people at Cisco who may chose to answer in out-of-the-box ways!)

Here’s a link to the (employee-accessible-only) rules and printable PDF.

And here are a few examples from a couple of folks you might recognize from our Executive Leadership Team, and some from our enthusiastic interns!

Chuck Robbins I Chose Cisco photo

New CEO Chuck Robbins says it’s because Cisco Rocks (and it does!)

Fran Katsoudas I Chose Cisco  photo

SVP of HR and Chief People Officer Fran Katsoudas wants to change the world!

Ruba Borno I Chose Cisco photo

VP, Growth Initiatives and Chief of Staff to the CEO Ruba Borno wants to make things happen!

Cisco Intern I Chose Cisco photo

May, a Cisco employee, likes that she can be herself!

Intern Kayla I Chose Cisco

Intern Kayla (Instagrammer extrodinaire) likes the exposure to all levels in the organization!

Employees! Now go, post, and share to get likes. Have fun!

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Geeky Is Cool at Cisco

Cisco's geeky Consulting Team

Cisco’s consulting team shows off their full geekiness.

The words “geek” or “nerd” are often thrown about with negative connotations, but not at Cisco! Here, we wear our geek badges with pride, and like to think that being geeky is cool.

Take, for example, Cisco’s Consulting Services Team in San Jose, pictured above. They helped Cisco celebrate geekiness by taking a photo of all of their geek in one awesome photo. These are folks who work in Cisco’s innovation labs, who spearhead initiatives to get new generations inspired in technology, who solve big problems and make big changes. If it takes being geeky to do that, they’re all in!

Ben Varghese, a Cisco consultant (photo, bottom left) thinks being geeky is getting even cooler as you’re reading this blog post.

“My favorite quote about geekiness is from Bill Gates: ‘Be nice to geeks, you’ll probably end up working for one.’ As technology continues to change every aspect of life at an ever-increasing rate, this becomes more true every day.”

Shraddha Chaplot, an engineer at Cisco (photo, top right) makes it her mission to show that women can be geeks and be cool. She tells everyone she’s a geek, and wishes folks a happy “geekend” when Friday rolls around.

“So you don’t like the word ‘geek’?” she says. “Don’t think it’s cool, hmm? Well what if I told you that ‘geek’ is synonymous with wizard, superhero, and mathemagician (yes, I spelled that right). What if I told you that with these super geek powers you can create and build anything from a dream to reality? I get to do that everyday and so many of my friends do too. Being a geek is the coolest thing I’ve ever been.”

How do you embrace your geek? Tell us in comments below.

Know a geek (maybe it’s you!) that would be a great part of the Cisco Consulting Services team? Be sure to check out the open consulting roles here!

Are you, or do you know an engineer that embraces geek style? You can find open engineering roles here.

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What’s all the Hoopla About? Cisco Fun!

Digital Hoopla Team Playing PoolThey’re not pool sharks. They’re not hard-core gamers. They’re not Forrest Gump at the ping-pong table. They are, however, out to have fun together in what they call the Digital Halftime Hoopla lunchtime competition. They’re Cisco’s Digital Strategy and Enablement (DSE) Team!

“The Halftime Hoopla is a friendly competition,” says Kate Spring, a program manager for the DSE Team and the brain-child of the Halftime Hoopla. “Well, maybe sometimes it can get kind of heated. We’re a competitive bunch!”

Competitive in a friendly way, with no skills required, rest assured.

“In this competition, you don’t need to be good, you just need to be enthusiastic,” says Jennifer Mitchell, a project manager for the DSE team and Kate’s partner-in-crime for managing the program.

The DSE team is made up of seven groups, but to round it out to an even number of teams, the eighth team consists of the DSE leadership. Each group chose their game-face moniker. For example, The Digital Experience team competes as U-X Factor. The Digital Services and Platforms Team plays as the Smooth Operators. And the leadership? They’re the Space Invaders. And the team everyone wants to beat. *wink*

Digital Hoopla Team Ping PongEach quarter finds the teams competing in something different in a different part of the San Jose campus. The first quarter was all about trying their skills at video games (Mario Kart!) in the video game room. Next came breaking in the pool table. The current challenge is Ping-Pong.

Teams play each other in a half hour slot during lunch, and team members sign up to play via the internal Jive community. There’s a whole point system, to make it as fair as possible, and an entirely made-up set of rules to keep it light and fun.

Their prize? Glory. Bragging Rights. And, of course, the hand-made trophy, that could be an Emmy for as much as the teams compete for it.

Digital Hoopla Trophy“Everyone wants that trophy,” Kate laughs. “It’s really coveted, and sometimes carried around the office.”

Sound like fun? Their building office mates agree. Other teams linger in the hallways to watch and see who wins, sometimes cheering them on, sometimes consoling them in defeat. You can even tune into the occasional Periscope live-stream of the competition. Sometimes, with the Twitter hashtag #DigitalHoopla, they’ll display their skills (or lack thereof) for the world to watch.

“It makes people play a little differently when they know they’re being watched live,” Jennifer jokes.

Now, the DSE team is taking their game to the streets – of the Cisco San Jose campus that is. They’re trying to find ways to make it fun for other teams as well. Employees, you might want to start thinking of your team name – they’re coming for you!

If you want to have fun where you work, perhaps a job at Cisco would be a good match! See open roles at Cisco Careers.

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Cisco Employees Excited for Cisco Rocks!

There’s a party going on! An employee party to kick off FY16 with fun and food and friends. It’s called Cisco Rocks, and it’s in part a celebration to thank John Chambers for his 20 years as our CEO and to welcome Chuck Robbins and the new Executive Leadership Team.

Follow along on Twitter using the hashtag #CiscoRocks, or follow our Storify, below, for the fun throughout the day!

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Loving Employee Culture at Cisco

linked in 1 In August of 2010 my journey with Cisco began as I started my career on the Engineering Talent Acquisition Team.  Five years later, I can tell you that it is still just as fantastic as that first day because Cisco invests in me and wants me to grow.

When looking for work I knew I wanted to be part of a world-class recruitment function with awe -inspiring leaders, and Cisco fit this bill. Cisco innovates throughout every function within the company.

A typical day for me involves managing the recruitment of Software Development positions across Europe, Middle East and Africa. TA Advisors within Cisco recruit for 15-20 positions at one time, with certain peaks in demand. When these peaks happen our leadership looks at every solution to try and help the situation and we work together as a team to ensure those demands are met. I also enjoy that my position allows me to work in branding, social media, market intelligence, and diversity!

One of the things I love most about Cisco is our culture.  There is a true environment here for me to grow from within. Cisco employees are given a lot of developmental training. In my time here, I have worked within Project Management and Sourcing Training as well as Talent Advisory Sessions on Communication and Persuasion. Our teams also benefit from numerous in-house training sessions that explore topics such as Branding and Social Media to Immigration Protocols. The environment that I work in is very organic and all Cisco employees are empowered to work on initiatives to help us develop.

Another thing I’d like to mention is the care and attention that Cisco gives back to its employees and the communities around us.  My global team recently completed a Give Back Day where over 200 Talent Acquisition employees volunteered to help various charities around the globe.

I also know that Cisco also cares about me as an individual. They have helped me gently integrate back into the team after just coming back from maternity leave, and they have also supported me through a very difficult time with my father being ill.

Cisco is a great place to work and to grow, both personally and professionally. Our philosophy of “people first” cascades through every aspect of how we work, play, and live.



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