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Our customers are the heart and soul of everything we do at Cisco and each one of them has an interesting story to tell! Our Q&A series allows us to shine a spotlight on some of our most passionate customer advocates in The Global Gateway community as we learn more about their stories and backgrounds.

You may be wondering: What is The Global Gateway? It’s a community for Cisco customers where they can build powerful connections, expand their professional and personal networks, and learn from top experts in their field. One of our goals with our advocacy community is to deepen our relationships with our customers and today, we have one of the friendliest faces in The Global Gateway joining us for a chat. I’m excited to welcome Christoph Neulinger from Generali.

Welcome, Christoph! Let’s kick things off by talking about what you wanted to be when you were 16 years old?

When I was 16, I wanted to become an engineer and work with a car manufacturer like BMW.

Cisco customer advocate, Christoph Neulinger

Where did you start your career? And, what professional decision or opportunity helped lead you to your current role?

My first job after university was with Generali in Munich, where I started as a hardware specialist supporting insurance agents. When my colleagues were looking for someone within the company who was open to testing new technology and keen to solve new technical challenges, my managers would often come to me. From there, I took advantage of the most interesting opportunities and now, after a long road with twists and turns, I am a data center network expert.

I really like how you took advantage of all those opportunities at Generali! As you mentioned, you’re still currently working there. How has partnering with Cisco helped your work both in your segment and industry?

I’ve had the opportunity to attend many Cisco Live events over the years, and listening to Cisco’s vision helped me get a better idea of what the future of IT could look like and how networks are stepstones to this future.

That’s amazing that Cisco Live has helped you with your own work vision. What’s been your biggest challenge in your company this year, and how did you overcome it?

The biggest challenge this year was integrating ACI and NSX-T into one data center solution. Thanks to experts like Alejandro, the steep learning curve to overcome the challenges of implementing a heterogeneous network solution was made easier!

Let’s move on to The Global Gateway! How would you describe this customer advocacy community to those who haven’t heard of it before?

It’s a fun and entertaining way to interact with Cisco and get the chance to network with likeminded Cisco customers and peers!

You’re one of our community “Rockstars” and we really appreciate how active you are in the community—especially with all the guest discussion moderation you do! What made you want to join The Global Gateway, and how has being part of this community impacted you both professionally and personally?

When I first joined The Gateway in 2018, which at the time was still divided into three regional communities, I was curious about the community aspect. I joined, hoping I would get more unique insights and information about Cisco.

Since then, I really value the opportunity to hear other customers’ ideas to a challenge I may currently face, or find solutions that could be useful to me soon. I also really like that I have the chance to share my technical knowledge with the community through discussions. It’s great to be part of the Cisco customer network family.

We’re almost at the end of the interview, Christoph, and we’d love to finish with three things you can’t live without?

That’s easy: Sonja, Julia, and Katya: my two daughters and my beloved wife!

Amazing! Thank you again for joining us, Christoph! 

You are welcome!

Read more customer advocate interviews

You might enjoy this interview with our Global Gateway customer advocate, Inderdeep.

 

Join us in The Global Gateway

For our customers who have already joined us in The Global Gateway, say hello to Christoph if you haven’t met each other yet. And for those Cisco customers who haven’t yet joined The Global Gateway, consider doing so! You’ll be able to:

The Global Gateway customer advocacy community at Cisco
  • Connect with peers in a gamified, online community
  • Have an opportunity to meet with Cisco’s executives
  • Share your feedback, questions, and best practices
  • Get access to “insider” content and resources
  • Grow your professional and personal brand
  • Amplify your company’s success story with Cisco technology

Ready to get started? Head over to The Global Gateway and say hello!