Diversity Makes Our World Bigger and Our Business Better

July 16, 2012 - 2 Comments

In my work for Cisco, I speak to people from all over the world. Some of them speak languages I’ve never heard of. Others celebrate holidays I’ve read about in books but not experienced. They live a world away, but they make my world bigger just by telling me a little bit about their lives.

This is just a small part of what it means to work in an inclusive and diverse environment like the one at Cisco.

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Embracing diversity is an important part of Cisco’s approach to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). It enriches the workplace, increases employee satisfaction and engagement, and gives tailored support to help employees attain their personal and professional goals. While building our corporate culture for innovation, excellence, and market share, inclusion and diversity also bring value to our business.

For example, 16 percent of Cisco employees worldwide participate in an Employee Resource Group (ERG), lending their diverse expertise to product development, marketing, and advertising to our increasingly diverse consumer base.

These ERGs range from Veterans Enablement and Troop Support (military veterans) to the Cisco Disabilities Awareness Network to the Middle East Diversity and Inclusion Network.

Diversity and inclusion are important aspects of CSR at Cisco

We also strive to make a difference in local communities by supporting small and minority-owned businesses throughout our global supply chain. As just one example, Cisco funded scholarships for three minority business enterprises to participate in a four-day skills development program at the UCLA Management Development for Entrepreneurs Academy.

Please read this interview with Cisco’s recently appointed Chief Diversity Officer, Sandy Hoffman, to learn more about inclusion and diversity at Cisco.

Learn more about our overall commitment to our employees at csr.cisco.com.

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  1. The beauty in technology is that it can fill gaps, shorten distances, and break down barriers in communication. This allows us to make friends around the world. The faster we embrace diversity, the faster we can celebrate what we already have in common.

  2. Alexis, great piece around the power Employee Resource Groups can have in the business when aligned and engaged. In fact, it is the intersection of social responsibility and business alignment that can create positive explosive outcomes! In this “new normal”, a world filled with volitility, ambiguity, global competition, and speed to change, ERGs can play a larger role when position correctly! Thanks for sharing your insights!