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The Engagement Factor & Collaboration

Have you ever sent an e-mail that’s been misinterpreted and it took a long time to sort out the miscues? I have. And I suspect that many of you reading this blog have too.

So, it wasn’t surprising to see that a recent study by the Economist Intelligent Unit found that 88% of business leaders feel that a significant misunderstanding will slow them down. And 75% believe that in-person collaboration is critical to their business success. Perhaps that’s because 54% consider gauging engagement and focus to be the most important part of communications. And you do that through a combination of visual and audio cues, such as facial expressions, gestures and body language, tone of voice.

In my own interactions I do believe this is critical, but in today’s world you can’t always be there in person. Read More »

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Connecting, Empowering and Inspiring Women in Technology at Cisco

April 20, 2012 at 4:47 pm PST


Birds of Feather Session

Women in technology have unique opportunities and challenges. Only about 25% of Information Technology jobs are held by women and this can lead to feelings of isolation. Additionally, when women don’t see a lot of role models in the industry, they find it harder to believe they can succeed.

In working with the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology, I’ve learned that it’s important to acknowledge these challenges and have open conversations about them. After brainstorming with my manager and getting great support from my VP, I rallied a group of women to create a day devoted to the development and advancement of women in technology.

On March 27th, we held our first Women in Technology Forum for Cisco employees. The main event in San Jose, California saw 300 attendees in-person. The nice thing about working at a worldwide leader in networking is that Read More »

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Cisco Continues Its Leadership in Driving Flexibility and Productivity for Telepresence End Users

Productivity and flexibility are key words that we hear many times in the work place.

What do they mean to IT administrators in relationship to telepresence meeting room scheduling? In the past this was a complicated process that meant that Microsoft Exchange server had to be taken off line to do this type of upgrade. Now with a new feature capability from Cisco TelePresence TMSXE, IT administrators can install TMSXE quickly and easily with step by step instructions without impacting Microsoft Exchange during the upgrade. This means there is no impact to end-user’s productivity because the upgrade is seamless and transparent to them. TMSXE continues to empower end users by giving them more control and flexibility to schedule telepresence meeting rooms when and where they need without needing IT support to do so. TMSXE frees up IT resources to focus on more pressing issues vs. having to be the telepresence meeting room scheduler for an organization. Read More »

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It’s Not Enough to Be Connected

I attended Enterprise Connect for the ninth time this year, but it was the first time I delivered a keynote address. With the advances in technology today I could have delivered my keynote via TelePresence from Oslo, my home town in Norway. But I chose to attend in person because in this case face-to-face was the best way to tell my story.

I spoke to how “It is not enough to be connected.” This may sound strange coming from me, especially since I represent “the” networking company, but Cisco has evolved, as technology, businesses, and customer needs have evolved. Just being connected is not enough to drive the next levels of productivity. So, we need to think beyond connectivity. Read More »

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No-Holds-Barred Inspiration

I’m currently basking in the afterglow of an intense three days of non-stop inspiration, stimulation and general brain expansion. I’m referring to EG6/EG Everywhere, an amazing conference centered around the exchange of stories and experiences of creative brainiacs that included scientists, musicians, magicians, geographic and oceanographic explorers, artists, and others that tickled my neurotransmitters.

Cisco was not just a sponsor, but the provider of the technology that made this traditionally 300-person-limited-audience event available for people around the world to participate in—as audience members and as speakers. With the interactive platform developed for the event, anyone could watch live stream and see fun things happening online that those at the live event couldn’t because they were “on break.”

However, where the technology really made a splash was when retired Astronaut Mark Kelly and his wife Congresswoman Gabby Giffords were stranded when their flight to the conference got cancelled.  A little bit of a problem since they were listed as the closing speakers. NPR’s Scott Simon, slated to host Mark and Gabby on stage, captured the situation brilliantly in a tweet about the airline being “The only force that can ground @ShuttleCDR & family to keep them from EG conference.” Talk about an ironic twist. The email exchange among those on the Cisco team trying to come up with a solution carried the apt subject line: “Houston, We Have a Problem.” The good news is that Cisco TelePresence came to the rescue —and Mark (in Houston) and Scott (on stage in Monterey) had a wonderfully warm conversation that was both interesting and moving.

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