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13 Tips to Inspire Your Inner Leader

Female Leaders Cisco Japan

Lots of people think of the number 13 as unlucky, but sometimes, it can be a LUCKY number.

It was for the 13 women at Cisco Japan who were chosen to participate in a program called Project Quantum – a year-long program that would help them take quantum (rapid) leaps and accelerate their leadership development.

The 13 were so inspired by what they experienced during their training that they wanted to pay it forward to other women (and men.) So they decided to put their thoughts on paper – 200+ pages and 5 chapters of them – in a book called Discover the Aspiring Leader In You.

“I’m very fortunate to be a part of the journey with those 13 passionate ladies! They’ve got the most out of the learning opportunities and now they are giving back to the rest of Cisco employees, including males and females! By reading this book, you can join and enjoy the journey together!” says 山中朋子Tomoko Yamanaka, Inclusion & Collaboration Manager.

“I want to create an organization that can continue to create new values where people can shine as much as possible,” says Rutsuko Yoshida, a cross-functional product manager for Cisco who participated in the program “If I could tell what I got through this program, it would be that Cisco is a wonderful company that knows the importance of inclusion in innovation, these women are now my role models, mentors and friends, and that if I want to climb up, I have to challenge myself.”

Cisco Japan women leaders

The 13 women chosen to participate in Cisco Japan’s project quantum were inspired to share what they learned!

Here are 13 tips straight from the book and the women that wrote it that you can use to inspire your inner leader.

  1. Enjoy change. It is important to see change as a friend. Change does not go away. Change is an opportunity to learn new things. Learn to adapt, learn to lead in a new environment. Have fun!“Since the company gives me some authority, I can work in a relaxed manner even when there’s tension.” 吉澤 浩美 Hiromi Yoshizawa, Senior Manager Technical Services
  1. Make things fun. Work, challenges, new project new tasks, new targets…. It is easy to get overwhelmed, bogged down. So much to do, so little time. We need to remember the fun, the excitement, the joy that comes with the effort on working on ourselves. Be creative: Find ways to bring fun and joy into everything you do!“Always keep passion and motivation for work and enjoy every minute to move forward.” – 上野 由美 Yumi Ueno, Sales Business Development Manager Collaboration Architecture.
  1. Welcome opportunities. Stand up. Take the challenge. Overcome your fears and hesitations. New opportunities come to you to help you grow and develop. Make the most of it.“You can achieve multiple tasks by not pursuing too much completeness, but rather thinking to avoid jams and work effectively.” 佐藤 菜穂子 Sato, Naoko Echigoya
  1. Go one more step. Obstacles can appear to block your way to success. Persevere and do not give in. Gather the strength and go one step further. You impose on you your own limitations. You have the power to expand your mind and go the extra mile.“Stepping up is fun! I want to engage myself in anything with a strong passion.” 田名部 朋子 Tomoko Tanabe, Senior Account Manager Public Sector Sales
  1. Speak up. Whatever the reason, remember that if you do not speak up, you will not be heard. If you do not voice your thoughts, the discussion will be less rich, less diverse, less innovative.“I can discuss a good program or tactic for the organization when doing my work. There is not rigid formality but freedom.” 原田 慶子 Keiko Harada, Marketing Manager Japan Marketing
  1. Set your goals high. Who knows the extent of your boundless potential? Nobody has the answer to that question. You can stretch and achieve more than you can possibly imagine, if only you take the time to set goals that are inspiring and challenging.I want to forego easy decisions, and respect the image of myself that I aspire to” –吉田 留津子 Rutsuko Yoshida, cross-functional project manager for Advanced Services.
  1. Elevate your point of view. Look at the issue from the point of view of your manager, of your manager’s manager. Look at problems thinking a bit higher, a bit broader.“It’s important to think about what the other person really wants by standing in his/her shoes, and produce results.” –千田 恭子 Kyoko Senda, Business Operation Manager APJC Business Partnership
  1. Have a plan B. Not because you plan to fail or give up, but because a Plan B will give you the freedom and extra peace of mind to know that you will know what to do regardless of what happens.“My work policy is always find the best solution for creating a win-win situation.” 前原 朋実 Tomomi Maehara, Product Manager, Enterprise Networking Division
  1. Be a skillful communicator. Are you a skillful communicator? If yes, you know that communication is a flow: a flow of words, a flow of meaning and a flow of understanding. And the flow works both ways. Communication is a skill that is ever aware, ever present, always conscious of the other party.“I want to consider things according to someone else’s perspective, such as by understanding the customer’s needs.” –長崎 友美 Yumi Nagasaki, senior account manager, Global Service Provider.
  1. Have the courage to say no. It could be your boss, your partner, your friend or a project manager… They have an ask from you. They want you to comply, they want you to agree. There are times when YES is indeed the answer to give. But there are times when you need to prioritize and for one reason of another you need to push back, you need to say NO.“In the future, I want to focus on ’Dan sha ri’ (decluttering). Organizing my belongings by thinking about whether I need each object to help me better organize my mind. There are many people who have capacity to take on more, even when they are busy.” 佐藤 麻子 Asako Sato, Program Manager, Service Sales
  1. Have a mentor. A mentor is like a friend, someone you can trust. A mentor is not necessarily a coach. It is someone you can be open with, someone who has your best interest in mind at all times, and with whom you can share your dreams, aspiration and doubts without any fear of being judged.My personal motto is ‘Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.’” 山田 晴香 Haruka Yamada, Product Manager, Technical Services
  1. Listen to your heart. Yes, planning, thinking and having a schedule are critical part of a framework to be successful. But at the end of the day, remember that they are just tools that are supposed to serve you, not you serve them. So allow time and space for moments of spontaneity. Listen to the voice of your heart if you feel you need to re-prioritize, if you feel you need to adjust course, do so, being true to your own voice.“My personal motto is ‘Ichi-go, ichi-e’ (Meeting only once in a lifetime). I hold respect for each meeting and each moment.” –平田 Kai Hirata, Senior Account Manager Enterprise Sales
  1. Kill the parrot! We all have a parrot inside our heads. That internal voice that questions and shakes your confidence, that repetitive voice that makes you wonder if you are well-prepared or not. The parrot can be persistent, it can keep on saying things that make you doubt yourself. You know what you know. You have put efforts and energy into what you are doing. Believe in yourself and deliver the best performance you are capable of!“Challenge difficult things as great opportunities.” 田村 亜弓 Ayumi Tamura, Marketing Manager, Japan Marketing.

Cisco is a great place for leaders, current and future. Won’t you join us?

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Next Generation Executive Leadership Team

Today I’m extremely proud and excited to announce my next generation executive leadership team who will lead Cisco into the digital age.

With the increasing pace and complexity of today’s market, it’s critical that our leadership team understands our customers, delivers results, brings diverse perspectives and experiences, and builds world-class, highly motivated teams. This is what will differentiate us as a much faster, innovative organization that delivers the best results for our customers.

We have been developing and attracting our next generation of leaders for many years, and I’m confident that this team is ready to lead Cisco’s next chapter. They know how Cisco works, what makes Cisco great, and how we can accelerate our current momentum. Some have been with the company for as long as I have or longer, a third have joined Cisco in the last 3 years, and others are new to Cisco.

They have the capabilities, accomplishments, and the values required to lead us into the future. Their combined vision, passion and authenticity, along with a focus on strategy, results, and innovation truly differentiate this team. These unique characteristics reflect the remarkable culture of Cisco that has motivated and energized me for the past 17 years.

Executive Leadership Team

Let me explain why each person is the ideal leader to move us forward.

Pankaj Patel, Executive Vice President, Development

  • Everything we do starts with our innovation. Pankaj leads Cisco’s 25,000 development engineers and the company’s $36 billion technology portfolio.
  • He joined Cisco through the acquisition of Stratacom and has since overseen Cisco’s innovation in the cloud, mobility, data center, security, collaboration, software and the Internet of Everything markets.
  • Over the last 2 years, Pankaj has led the transformation of Cisco’s engineering organization to drive focus and accelerate innovation. He is pioneering new ways of driving innovation at Cisco, including a new model of internal start-ups which he launched last year.

Kelly Kramer, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

  • Kelly joined Cisco three years ago after 20 years at GE working across numerous divisions and countries around the world.
  • She quickly established herself as a business leader capable of partnering across and influencing the entire organization, particularly with her no-nonsense direct style.
  • She has driven a disciplined focus on our financial model and delivered on our commitments to our shareholders.
  • Her promotion to CFO 3 quarters ago was seamless, and she is extremely well respected internally and externally.

Rebecca Jacoby, Senior Vice President, Operations

  • Previously Chief Information Technology Officer (CIO), Rebecca has a strong track record of operational excellence, innovative problem solving, and partnering cross-functionally. Her leadership and talent development skills have resulted in some of the best employee satisfaction scores in the company.
  • She has elevated the role of IT at Cisco and positioned us as one of the best in the industry. She has exemplified Fast IT, enabling $5.4B of incremental revenue in the last 4+ years with just $400M of incremental expense. She did all of this while driving down costs by over 5% each year.
  • Her experience in development, operations, supply chain and IT make enable her to drive Cisco’s continued focus on profitability, accountability, and world-class operational excellence.
  • Her deep relationships with CIOs around the world make her extremely well respected across the industry and she was recently inducted into the CIO Hall of Fame.
  • Guillermo Diaz has been promoted to CIO reporting directly to Jacoby. Diaz, most recently Cisco senior vice president of IT—Connected IT, has been accountable for the company’s enterprise IT architecture, technology strategy, and IT services/operating model.

Francine Katsoudas, Senior Vice President, Chief People Officer

  • Fran is the architect of Our People Strategy and Human Resources Organization, focusing on how Cisco wins in the talent marketplace while creating a compelling and unique employee experience.
  • She accelerates company transformation through leadership, attracting and retaining the best talent and building a culture of passion and innovation.
  • Fran is committed to ground breaking HR solutions, analytics and new talent models.

Chris Dedicoat, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales

  • Chris joined Cisco in 1995 and has served as Senior Vice President of EMEAR for the past four years where he has led the region to solid growth in a very challenging market.
  • Chris has a keen understanding of technology and market opportunities, an ability to drive transformation while running the business, and an unparalleled ability to lead and motivate teams.

Joe Cozzolino, Senior Vice President, Services

  • Joe has extensive global General Management experience in all facets of the business including engineering, sales, & services. He has a competitive edge and in his own words: “hates losing more than he loves winning.”
  • He began his career more than 25 years ago as a Systems Engineer designing video voice on fiber optics. For the last 2 years, Joe led Cisco’s Service Provider Mobility and Video Infrastructure businesses.
  • Before Cisco, he spent 12 years at Motorola in various executive roles successfully growing new businesses undergoing technology inflection.
  • Joe has an Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, and an MBA from Annie Maria College.

Hilton Romanski, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology and Strategy Officer

  • Hilton has been responsible for the ‘buy’ in Cisco’s “build, buy, partner, integrate” strategy for growth and innovation
  • He has led over $20 billion in acquisitions in 40 deals, including Sourcefire, Meraki, and Airespace and was named Deal Maker of the Year in 2014 by The Deal.
  • He has also led Cisco’s M&A and investment entry into the emerging markets by forming and expanding teams and activities in China, India, Russia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America.
  • Hilton oversees Cisco’s corporate venture investment portfolio, currently valued at $2 billion, one of the highest performing corporate venture capital funds globally.
  • In his new role, Hilton will lead CTSO and be chartered to drive strategic development and growth of Cisco by applying important tools to nurture technology disruption, build alliance partnerships, acquire companies, invest in start-ups, and engage the global marketplace of ideas to drive Cisco’s success

Karen Walker, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer

  • Karen joined Cisco six years ago from Hewlett-Packard, where she held business and consumer leadership positions including Vice President of Alliances and Marketing for HP Services, and Vice President of Strategy and Marketing.
  • Her 20-plus years in the IT industry have included senior field and marketing leadership roles in Europe, North America, and the Asia Pacific region.
  • Karen is a Board member of the I.T. Services Marketing Association and a member of the CMO Council North America Advisory Board, the Marketers that Matter Council, Advancing Executive Women (AWE) in Silicon Valley, and CRN’s 2013 Women of the Channel. She also sponsors multiple initiatives to accelerate female leadership within Cisco.

Mark Chandler, Senior Vice President and General Counsel

  • Mark joined Cisco’s Legal Department in 1996 when it had 12 employees; today we have a phenomenal team of legal, contract and compliance professionals of more than 400 people that is regularly ranked among the industry’s best.
  • Before Cisco, Mark was General Counsel at Maxtor, a Fortune 500 disk drive manufacturer, and at StrataCom.
  • Mark is a strong business leader with a keen ability to innovate, disrupt and provide tremendous input into our strategy. In 2010, The National Law Journal named him one of the 40 Most Influential Lawyers of the Decade and in 2013, American Lawyer numbered Mark among the “Top 50 Big Law Innovators of the Last 50 Years.”

Ruba Borno, VP, Growth Initiatives and Chief of Staff

  • Ruba will join Cisco from The Boston Consulting Group where she is a Principal and leader in the Technology, Media & Telecommunications, and People & Organization practice groups.
  • She holds a Ph.D. and a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan, and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering with honors from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
  • For the last seven years, Ruba has been advising enterprise and consumer technology executives on organizational change, increasing operational effectiveness, and accelerating business growth.
  • Ruba has been an Intel Ph.D. fellow at the National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Integrated MicroSystems, contributed to multiple peer-reviewed research publications, and is a supporter of Bay Area organizations tackling education and poverty challenges.

I am committed to investing in and developing Cisco’s extended leadership team over time. I plan to also look externally to fill several roles that will lead key growth initiatives in new markets. I am also committed to adding even more diversity of thought and experience over time, constantly strengthening both our bench and our decision making.

There are also a few individuals who have made tremendous contributions to Cisco who will be transitioning over the next few months. I am thankful for the years of partnerships I’ve had with these amazing leaders who will be leaving Cisco:

  • Wim Elfrink has served as Cisco’s Chief Globalization Officer since 2006 and opened Cisco’s second global headquarters in Bangalore, India. His leadership on smart cities and connected industries has helped define our vision for the next wave of the Internet, the Internet of Everything. Wim will retire from Cisco on July 25th and I want to thank him for his exceptional leadership and his passion for what is possible.
  • Padmasree Warrior is a highly respected leader who most recently served as Cisco’s Chief Strategy and Technology Officer. She is well known across the industry and the globe, and has been a champion internally for innovation, strategic partnerships, investments and mergers and acquisitions. Padmasree has led the success of many of our strategic partnerships and will remain with us until September to help finalize some of our key partnerships for the future. I am grateful for the impact she’s had on Cisco and her commitment to helping us finalize these important alliances.
  • Edzard Overbeek in his role as Senior Vice President of Cisco Services has been an incredible partner to me for many years. He has made the decision to leave Cisco after 15 years at the company and leadership roles in every region around the world. Edzard has agreed to stay on through the transition as a strategic advisor on key disruptive strategies that he has shown great passion for while at Cisco. His vision and energy will ensure his success in his next venture, something I hope will be closely connected to Cisco.

We are so fortunate that these leaders are able to remain with us in the near-term to finish key projects and ensure a smooth transition. I believe this is a testament to the Cisco culture as well as their commitment, service, and leadership.

Going forward, my new team will define and build the next chapter for Cisco together. I’m extremely confident we will move even faster, innovate like never before, and pull away from the competition. This is an incredible team with a diverse set of experiences, expertise and backgrounds to accelerate our innovation and execution, simplify how we do business, drive operational rigor in all we do, and inspire our amazing employees to be the best they can be.

This new leadership team, along with the deep talent and passion of all of Cisco, gives me absolute confidence that we will lead, and our customers will win. I’ve never been more excited to build our future together.

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Cisco Security Leadership Transition

I would like to announce that David Goeckeler is assuming leadership responsibilities for Cisco’s Security Business Group (SBG) effective immediately.  David has served as vice president of Product and Platform Engineering for the SBG for the last two years. His expertise will continue to help drive Cisco’s security momentum and ensure we are our customers’ number one security partner.

David has been with Cisco for 14 years. Most recently, he and his team have been instrumental in developing Cisco’s end-to-end security architecture, integrating market-leading products from recent acquisitions including Sourcefire into Cisco security solutions. These efforts are enabling Cisco to address customers’ needs in a way that no other vendor can match today.

David played a key role in last week’s launch of the Cisco ASA with FirePOWER Services next-generation firewall (NGFW). His efforts also directly contributed to a report issued today by NSS Labs that shows Cisco as a leader in security effectiveness in its 2014 NGFW Security Value Map (SVM).

David maintains a deep bench of security expertise including Marty Roesch, Bret Hartman, Mike Fuhrman, Scott Harrell and Marc Solomon. David has received a M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign, and MBAs from Columbia University and the University of California – Berkeley.

I would also like to share with you that Christopher Young has decided to leave Cisco. We would like to thank Chris for his leadership and guiding Cisco through significant transitions. Under David’s new leadership, we look forward to continuing to provide best in class security solutions to our customers.

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ICCC 2012: Raising Awareness of Common Criteria, Promoting Security for Emerging Technologies

In this age of emerging technologies and increasingly complex cyber threats, government and enterprise organizations of all types need to ensure that products they use meet key security criteria, are standards based, perform as expected and interoperate reliably with existing technology.

As these organizations adopt new emerging technologies in hopes of saving on infrastructure and maintenance costs, is this at the risk of security? Without the proper security mechanisms in place and validated, the results could be catastrophic.

Common Criteria is an international standard for evaluating IT product security and reliability, recognized by more than 26 countries around the world. Common Criteria is considered a mandatory requirement for purchasing network security products by many governments.

The 13th International Common Criteria Conference, this year being held in Paris from September 18-20, will bring together leaders from governments and organizations of all types from around the world.

The ICCC Conference offers certification/validation schemes, evaluation laboratories, product developers, system integrators and product users to exchange expertise, experiences and skills on the application of the Common Criteria and security for Information and Communication Technology [ICT] solutions, such as Cloud Computing.

Cisco will participate in speaking sessions at the conference focused on topics including Supply Chain Security, Architectural approaches to Technical Communities and Collaborative Protection Profiles, Cloud Security and Innovation.

Details on the speaking sessions presented by and in collaboration with Cisco are below:

Progress Report from the Supply Chain Security Technical Workgroup
Sept. 19 at 11:30 CET
Track 1 – Room B/Chagall + Van Dongen
Michael Grimm, senior program manager, Microsoft and Terrie Diaz, product certification engineer, Cisco

An Architectural Framework Approach in the Development of Technical Communities and Collaborative Protection Profiles
Sept. 19 at 11:30 CET
Track 2 – Room C/Soutine & Utrillo
Axel Munde, BSI
Dirk Jan Out, Brightsight
Jen Gilbert, lead, global certifications strategy and policy, Cisco

Cloud Security and Common Criteria
Sept. 19 at 14:30 CET
Track 3 – Room D/Picasso
Ashit Vora, manager, security assurance – FIPS/Common Criteria, Cisco

Innovation and the Common Criteria
Sept. 19 at 15:00 CET
Track 3 – Room D/Picasso
Audrey Plonk, Intel
Jen Gilbert, lead, global certifications strategy and policy, Cisco

Visit ICCC and Cisco Global Government Certifications for more information.

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