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Cisco Virtual Router Debuts at AWS re:Invent in Las Vegas

Let’s talk about one of the biggest IT trends out there: THE CLOUD. And, let’s talk about why it should matter to you as you’re poking around and researching Cisco products. As you probably know, “the cloud” is more than just one of the hottest buzzwords out there – it’s where the market is shifting towards, and quickly. But you might be wondering…why is Cisco, the market leader in networking hardware, talking about cloud?

One word: CSR1000V.

If you need a primer on the CSR, check out this quick video below. The Cliff Notes version is that Cisco basically took its IOS XE operating system from the ASR1000 and created a virtual router, and voila – behold the CSR1000V, providing virtualized routing and security capabilities in the cloud.

As you might’ve heard through the grapevine, the CSR can now be deployed in Amazon Web Services (AWS). Now that we’re one of the cool kids in the AWS ecosystem, it was a great time to launch the CSR1000V (AMI version) at the 2nd annual AWS re:Invent conference held on November 12-15. re:Invent is AWS’s global community (customer and partner) conference targeted at the developer crowd. This year’s attendance was 9,000 strong, evenly split amongst startups, midsize companies, and large enterprises. Read More »

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Why the “Social Employee” is Inevitable

I’m always astounded by two facts:  first, how few employees feel engaged with their organizations; and second, the number one reason people leave a job is their manager.   Ok, I’m astounded by one more fact:  75% of the companies on the Fortune 500 from 25 years ago aren’t on the list any more.

Said another way, a smaller percentage of managers are inspiring their employees to achieve greatness than those who aren’t – by a long shot.  It’s the tough reality.   That’s what makes The Social Employee by Cheryl Burgess and Mark Burgess such an interesting book to read.  (In open disclosure, my colleague Jeremy Hartman and I were asked to contribute a chapter on Cisco to the book.)

When I read how companies like Southwest Airlines, IBM and DOMO invest in social media to drive their employees to the priorities of the business, a light bulb when off in my head:  there is a galactic difference between alignment and engagement,

  • Alignment is driven by “what” you need to do;
  • Engagement is based more on understanding “why” something is important to do.

Unless you satisfy the “why” you won’t get to the “what” as fast or as effectively.  This is a mindset for Read More »

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Embracing IoT? Security Must Be at the Core

Last month I attended a summit of subject matter experts on securing the Internet of Things (IoT). At first, I thought I had the wrong room, because it seemed that everybody other than me was an architect or engineer working for a device manufacturer, and as a result the conversation was dominated by placing security controls into the devices, themselves. In contrast, I tend to approach the issue from the perspective of protecting the core of the network. But just when I was beginning to think I had wasted an hour-long drive and was going to be bored out of my skull all day, a few of us started debating the issue and the conversation began to evolve.  Before long, we had found common ground in the fact that security controls are all about trust relationships – ‘I trust you, therefore I will allow you to do that’.

Now trust is a funny thing, because by its very nature it can neither be one-sided nor one-dimensional. Instead, it must be built into every aspect of the transaction; a sort of “digital handshake” to ensure all is well before doing business. In other words, each of our pre-conceived perspectives was correct, yet we were all being stubborn and short-sighted! Read More »

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Dare to be Bold in Collaboration

Last month we had the most successful Collaboration Summit conference ever, with partners, analysts, consultants, customers and Cisco executives coming together to explore how new collaboration solutions are helping companies become more empowered, engaged and innovative.

My mantra throughout the event was dare to be bold. Just as Cisco is launching a new wave of innovation, I am challenging you, our Cisco partners, to be bold in collaboration around 4 key imperatives:

  • Transform your sales
  • Extend the workspace in new ways
  • Accelerate your cloud business
  • Redefine the services you offer Read More »

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How does Cisco Backbone Switching help address BYOD, Mobility and Security Needs?

Cisco will host a live backbone switching webcast on Wed Dec 4, 2013 to discuss BYOD, mobility, security and how Cisco backbone switching addresses these customer needs. This is the second webcast in the Cisco switching webcast series. You can view the first one, Cisco access switching webcast, at any time as it is now an on-demand video.

This backbone switching webcast comes at a critical time, as BYOD and mobility are creating major impact to the workplace.  According to a recent study on BYOD and mobility,

  • 75% of employees think that the IT department should help secure personal devices used at work;
  • 63% of IT pros say the biggest network issue will be the increased bandwidth requirements;
  • 39% of them say that network latency is a problem because of mobile devices;
  • And 39% of them have seen serious issues tied to network performance as a result.

Read More »

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