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Where Do Your Teams Work?

Lately we’re hearing a lot about the end of traditional workplace hierarchies. Organizations expect employees to do more within smaller teams, and to do it faster. People want the freedom to rapidly move between projects and to collaborate with others inside and outside their organizations with fewer restrictions or privacy concerns. And they want to work from everywhere.

According to the 2014 ZK Research Unified Communications Purchasing Survey, 48% employees now spend at least 30% of their time away from their primary workspace and 71% of organizations regularly collaborate with individuals outside their company.

Today’s collaborators – what I call “agile workers” – are transforming the enterprise.  They are creating and sharing ideas and content rapidly, and interacting with colleagues inside and outside their organization from anywhere.  They work at their own pace and they want to use the devices of their choice.  Gone are the days of being in an office on a 9 to 5 schedule.  So even while organizations invest in collaboration tools to improve how people work at work; employees bring their own devices and apps to the workplace to be more productive, individually.  What we’re missing is a way to improve productivity for both the individual and the team, using the same, simple solution.

Think about your day. Despite all the new technologies available, do you default to the familiarity of e-mail and audio conferences? Do you feel that you work better with your teams inside your company or with others outside your organization? Do you feel more productive at the coffee shop or at your office?  Read More »

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Telephony: Video is the New Audio

Video is the New Audio at Cisco. That’s an audacious statement for a guy who started working in the Bell system about 30 years ago. The New Audio? Audio sets a standard that is pretty hard to beat. Audio telephony has been around for almost 140 years. (The first major phone system was started in 1877.) And in that time it has grown to become globally ubiquitous, because of three things:

  • it works, really well, all of the time,
  • it’s easy to use, and
  • it doesn’t matter what phone you use; you just use whatever is available, because all the systems interconnect.

Good quality video communication hasn’t been around for a century – it’s been around for maybe 20 years. (Although click here for a great picture of a commercial video phone from 1969). As a Cisco IT guy, let me explain why video is the new audio inside Cisco today.

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How much Video at Cisco?

We use a lot of video at Cisco. A recent tally shows that Cisco totals over 24,000 video calls every day, which raises a pretty big question: why do we use so much video at Cisco?  Read More »

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Video Collaboration Matters in the Millions

How can a global company make the most of its talent all over the world? How can teams of people collaborate productively no matter where they live and work? While email helps and phone calls help even more, video is critical.

Cisco IT supports our global teams with a successful integrated suite of video options. Cisco employees made nearly 6.5 million video calls this year. What are the most popular video solutions for calls or meetings, and how it has changed Cisco culture? Find out in my short video.

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Journey to the Cloud: a Smooth Transition

I speak with many business leaders about “the cloud” and how best to use it to improve collaboration. Quite often, discussions end up getting into specific services and technologies but I always try to ensure that some basic considerations are a primary focus – namely People, Processes and Culture. This video is a great overview and insight into how important it is to get the foundations right, and what questions you should ask before you start looking for a specific solution or ‘technology’.

The Three Considerations

People

People

People are your company’s greatest asset and you need to enable them fully and effectively. Increasingly, they “vote with their feet.” They use their own solutions or those provided directly by their departments instead of official IT options (shadow IT). For many reasons public cloud services are a big hit, but you can’t afford for the virtualized environment you have painstakingly created to be used only for functional or legacy workloads.  Nobody can afford a discrete, separate underutilized platform -- unappreciated and with hidden value. Read More »

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