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Message from John Chambers: Where Cisco is Taking the Network

Yesterday, our CEO John Chambers sent the following message to Cisco employees outlining the state of the company, upcoming changes and where Cisco is taking the network.  Transparency is a key tenet of Cisco’s culture, and given I’ve received a few media inquiries today as to the nature of the message, I’m sharing the letter in its entirety below.

Message from John Chambers

As many of you know, my values and approach to leadership are grounded in part by what I learned from my parents.  Both doctors, they taught me to fuel what’s healthy and to heal what’s not.  They taught me to seek solutions to challenges, not symptoms.  Over the years as your leader here at Cisco, I’ve also learned many things.  I’ve learned to read market transitions by listening deeply to our customers and partners.   And I’ve learned to adjust when and where it’s needed, quickly and transparently.

With this in mind, I’d like to share with you my thoughts about Cisco, as Gary Moore also shares his perspective after the first 30 days as our COO.  About what’s working well and is fundamental to who we are and what we stand for.  And about aspects of Cisco today we need to change, what you can expect from me and what I expect from you as we execute against our decisions and move forward, together.

First, as always, let’s start with our customers.  I’ve spent significant time recently reaching out to many of them around the world.  I’ve had extremely candid conversations about why they buy Cisco, why they don’t, and what they think we do best.  These conversations reinforce what I have known to be true about Cisco: our customers believe we are a company of passionate people that take time to imagine what’s possible, and to do what it takes to make them successful.

I’ve also solicited very direct feedback from many of you—as individuals, in small group meetings and through your participation in my blog postings and our CEC discussion forums (internal Cisco forums).   You are telling me that there is a reason you are at Cisco – our culture, our values, our vision.  You’ve also made it very clear that we must make it simpler to do the work we love to do, and to accelerate the impact we know we are making for our customers.

It is clear to me that we have incredible foundational strengths – our people, our relationships, our innovation and our strategy to extend the role of the network.  We have anticipated market transitions and made good decisions in capturing them.  We are disrupting the data center space. We are redefining the collaboration market. And we have gone big on video, a market that is changing society and business completely.

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