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This post was written together with Andrew Krueger, Business Architecture Global Program Lead.

The third stage of Cisco’s Business Architecture (BA) Training was first introduced to partners in 2016. It was later retired to undergo a complete rewrite: the objective was to integrate Cisco’s latest tools and methodologies practiced by Business Architects globally. We have now run the new class internally for over a year, continuously refining the curriculum and delivery. Today, we are delighted to announce the official launch of Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling for Cisco Partners. Systems Engineers from Cisco and our Partners will join the same classrooms, where they can exchange ideas and best practices.


Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling is a virtual instructor-led training, taking place across four sessions of four hours each. Under the guidance of veteran BA instructors, you will practice advanced business architecture techniques through hands-on, team-based exercises in Miro.

Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling – Class Agenda

You will be empowered to:

  • ​​Influence customers through consultative selling
  • Shape 1-page strategies
  • Develop customer insights on any industry and understand the drivers of primary personas
  • Identify and detail industry-relevant use cases
  • Orchestrate partner ecosystems and co-create solutions
  • Facilitate collaborative design thinking workshops
  • Build executive storyboards to secure the sponsorship of key stakeholders​​​​​​​


Master Four Business Architect Skills

The Four Skills of Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling

The training will enable participants to develop 4 BA skills essential to all Systems Engineers:

  • Strategist | Envision the 1-page strategy to picture where the business wants to go, how it’ll get there, and map out the strategic innovation domains for the years to come.
  • Orchestrator | Prioritize the use cases that will propel the business into the future and shape the integrated plan (architecture, roadmap, and partner ecosystem) to bring them to life.
  • Innovator | Run Design Thinking workshops with stakeholders from Business & IT, turning challenges into MVPs that you can rapidly code and start generating business outcomes​.
  • Storyteller | Tell the relevant story and do the cost-benefit analysis to convince LoB & IT executives to invest​.

Register Today for a Joint Cisco Internal-Partner Offering

EMEA/APJC | October 24th-27th | 9am – 1:30pm BST | 4pm – 8:30pm SGT

AMER | February 6th-9th | 9am – 1:30pm EST | 12pm – 4:30pm EST

Cisco Partners, register here! | Cisco Employees, register here!

Cisco training partner ExperTeach is the only official provider for DTVS.

So, you’ve registered for Stage 3 of Cisco BA — now what?

Free Black Belt Training for Cisco Partners

Cisco Partner Black Belt Course
(Cisco Partners Only)

Cisco Internal Learning Maps
(Cisco Employees Only)

Before joining this advanced training, you must start with Stages 1 & 2 of Cisco Business Architecture training, which is free for Cisco Partners. These on-demand learning maps in SalesConnect lay the groundwork for what will be put into practice across the four days of guided learning in Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling.

  • Stage 1 – Understand the value Cisco BA brings to the sales cycle and how it can improve your competitive posture while increasing the size of your strategic opportunities. Deliver an elevator pitch and know who to contact to initiate a BA-led engagement.
  • Stage 2 – Discover, qualify, and successfully position BA to your customers. Understand how BA fits into Cisco’s selling motion and how to utilize the available resources. Learn about the four skill domains at the heart of Cisco BA and the steps needed to become an equipped BA Maker.

Download our Templates

Across the four days of Design Thinking & Visual Storytelling, you will go hands-on with each of these four key tools. Each tool correlates to one of the methodologies listed above, allowing you to better incorporate the Cisco BA approach into your sales motion.

  • ​​​​​Digital Journey Dashboard (DJD) is your 1-page strategy — the big picture or the North star, if you prefer — which will guide executive decisions for the next 2-3 years. It’s the holistic storyline of WHY transformation is needed from a business/user/customer point of view, HOW the IT department will help drive the transformation, and WHAT technology investments are required to accelerate business innovation. The DJD empowers you to orchestrate the different initiatives/teams/stakeholders in an agile, lean, and impactful way.
  • Business Architecture Roadmap (BAR) ​​​​​​​is a holistic process enabling account teams and customers to build an outside-in, purpose-driven plan. This proven, virtual workshop methodology is powered by Design Thinking and collaboration tools (Webex + Miro). In just 2×2 hour sessions, an account team can have a draft BAR that provides a compelling infographic to tailor for/with their customers. In this way, BAR provides an easy and practical approach to building a valuable strategic plan, actively involving every member of the extended account team and the key stakeholders at the customer.
  • Business Innovation Sprints (BIS) enable you to run at the speed of a startup to address some of the toughest and most pressing business challenges. The secret to success is to bring your business stakeholders, end-users, and IT together in a workshop focused on solving one or more of the business challenges identified in the DJD. During this time (typically three half-days), they will learn new ways of working together remotely, leveraging the power of Design Thinking and modern collaborative tools.​​​​​​​
  • ​​​​​​Executive Storyboards (STORRY) help you to show & tell the story that will convince your business executives to invest in the new solutions you have identified to drive business transformation. You’ll make technology relevant to the Board of Directors. You’ll also ensure that each service deployed contributes to the gradual build-out of a secure, intelligent platform that will accelerate your business innovation.

Download all DTVS Templates, including Miro boards, PowerPoint, InDesign, etc.

Questions? Please contact Andrew Krueger at gse-ba-training@cisco.com for information.