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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – April 5, 2013

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Every Friday, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco partner news and stories of the week, as well as point you to important Cisco-related content you may have missed along the way. Let’s have it.

Off The Top

Andrew Sage, Cisco vice president, Worldwide Partner-Led, has good news for top-performing participants in Partner Plus: you’ll not only be recognized as part of Cisco’s new Winners Circle sales initiative, but you’ll also get to attend a special event at a luxury resort with some of Cisco’s key executives. You heard it right: prime networking, a gorgeous location, and an earnest reward for the hard work that goes into building and executing on Partner Led solutions.

It’s all part of the ongoing expansion of Partner Plus, including, as Andrew mentioned, new Partner Led Sales Excellence Training.

“You leverage the same content the Cisco sales team uses, meaning that partners and the field are on the same page when it comes to the fundamentals of business planning for an account or territory,” Andrew explains. “In turn, you can better manage sales.  It’s truly a collaborative learning process that we have seen transform partners from salespeople into more strategic advisors that get at what customers really want and need.”

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When Oracle User Groups “collaborate”, Great Things Happen

Collaborate 13

While some may be wary of the number 13, for 3 Oracle user groups (IOUG, OAUG, Quest Intl.) 13 is a measure of success for their joint (collaborative?) conference “Collaborate”, next week in Denver. Now in its 13th year, the 6000 attendee strong Collaborate is the world’s largest independent Oracle user group gathering.  And Cisco, along with our storage partners NetApp and EMC will be there demonstrating a breadth of Oracle infrastructure solutions (check Cisco activities and major speaking sessions  here)

In addition, Cisco is the sponsor of both the Women in Technology reception and Women in Technology panel discussion.  Cisco CEO John Chambers has made news recently with his women’s initiatives at Cisco, so extending that support at Collaborate 13 is a natural.

Cisco will have a large presence in the Collaborate 13 exhibit hall and will also have multiple conference sessions highlighting how Cisco Unified Computing System  has been winning the hearts and minds of Oracle users around the world. Whether the Oracle user wants to “build their own” custom system or buy a preconfigured and fully tested “converged infrastructure” solution, or anything in between, Cisco and its Oracle eco-system partners have an answer.

Here are some examples of customers who deployed Oracle solutions with Cisco Data Center architecture.

 

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Executive Roundtable: Cisco, Intel, and NetApp, with special guest Microsoft, on the Private Cloud

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We’ve been doing quite a bit of work recently with our strategic partners Intel, NetApp, and Microsoft on Microsoft oriented private cloud solutions. Specifically we’ve been focusing on new innovation going into our joint FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud reference architecture.

A great way to learn about these joint development activities is to join in on an upcoming executive roundtable – Simplifying Your Journey to Private Cloud – on Wednesday, April 17 at 2 p.m. EDT. Leaders from Cisco, Intel®, NetApp, and special guest Microsoft, will examine key areas where businesses can gain the best return and biggest competitive advantage while adopting a private cloud model.

Our expert panel will spotlight the innovative FlexPod with Microsoft Private Cloud, solution through customer results and open dialog, to sharing of essential insights. Please feel free to register here for this event.

For those of you in Las Vegas next week at Microsoft’s Management Summit 2013 event, remember to stop by and visit us at booth #501. We’ll have a variety of Windows Server 2012 and System Center 2012 SP1 demos available, led by subject matter experts on UCS, Nexus 1000V, UCS Manager, and FlexPod.

Learn more about our capabilities for a Microsoft oriented data center at www.cisco.com/go/microsoft

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Cisco Employee Receives Prestigious Governmental Award for Work on Project Samudaya

In November 2012, Cisco Bangalore-based employee Aravind Sitaraman (President – Inclusive Growth) received the prestigious Rajyotsava award for his leadership of Cisco’s Project Samudaya, which helped rebuild 5 villages in the Indian state of Karnataka after catastrophic flooding in 2009. This honor is the highest conferred to civilians by Karnataka’s state government. The award reflects Sitaraman’s deep personal commitment to the well-being of communities in India, as well as his strong alignment with Cisco’s unique method of sincere yet strategic social investment.

Cisco’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts are defined by a simple equation: you + networks = impact multiplied. When the right person meets the right technology, it’s easy to do the math. Indeed, many of Cisco’s CSR efforts begin with grassroots enthusiasm like Aravind’s, which, when combined with Cisco solutions and best practices, can yield an outcome like Project Samudaya: an employee’s authentic, locally attuned passion for change is exponentially multiplied by the company’s resources and expertise.

Aravind Sitaraman Receives Award

Aravind Sitaraman receives the prestigious Rajyotsava Award from India’s government.

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Top 10 Tips for Executive Social Media

Navigating social media can be an intimidating challenge for many people, but particularly for company executives who may not be naturally inclined to communicate using social channels or have the time to learn how to use them.

Let's Chat! Social Media Training Series

Sheila Jordan, Cisco Senior Vice President, IT Communications and Collaboration

My own experience with social media has evolved – initially by watching my teenage children use it to communicate, share photos, and catch up on the big news event of the day – and by watching others. For me, I find it easier to separately my personal and work life by using Facebook solely for family and friends, and Twitter and blogging for business topics.

Twitter is a fantastic way to reach a very broad audience.  There are now four generations of people in the workforce and Twitter is a channel they all use!

And I really enjoy blogging because it allows me to express my opinions and points of view on IT topics that are top of mind with CIOs and IT leaders. I do many, many customer executive briefings and get input directly from customers and learn what’s most of interest and important to them. I use that information as an opportunity to express my and Cisco’s point of view on a variety of IT topics – collaboration, mobility, cloud and social.

So for those of you who need some encouragement, here are my top 10 tips for executive social media:

  1. Be relevant – be timely.  It’s most important to get your point across while the topic is hot – if you tinker endlessly with your message, you’ll have missed the moment.
  2. Be provocative – use analytics and data points to back up your theories. Don’t be afraid to express your point of view.
  3. Use social media as a channel to message your organization and teams’ work and as a form of recognition. Colleagues will enjoy following you so use this channel as a way to express your appreciation!
  4. Show thought leadership (provide value)
  5. Use as an ongoing opportunity to connect with others – your peers, influencers and colleagues inside and outside your company

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    Let’s Chat! #CiscoSMT Social Media Training Series:
    Executive View on Social Media Experiences

  6. Listen to feedback and responses – have you resonated with your audience? This is a way to instantly get feedback. And don’t worry about responding to each and every comment; not everyone expects you to reply and when you do they are pleasantly surprised!
  7. Don’t spam.  Enough said.
  8. Personalize your social media – offer insights to how you think. Be authentic and human. If you’re asked to re-tweet a company message, be sure it reflects your own thinking.
  9. Don’t be afraid to be an expert!
  10. Have fun. Go for it – it’s a new medium and we are all still learning; don’t be shy!

How are your executives using social media? And do you have other tips you would recommend in addition to the 10 listed above? For more executive insights regarding social media, check out the Let’s Chat! #ciscosmt Social Media Training Series executive panel we participated in on April 3rd.

Happy Collaborating…the social way!

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