Cisco Embraces My Family
The world travels more now than it ever has, with Americans alone logging more than 405 million long-distance business trips every year.
Maybe you regularly contribute to that number? I know I do!
I love working for Cisco, and in particular, I love that we embrace technology, which often removes the need for business travel. I have had amazing conference calls over WebEx or TelePresence, and it’s not rare to hear how connected we Cisconians all feel – no matter the fact that many of us have teammates located across the globe. The world is increasingly growing smaller as technology advances, and Cisco is every bit a part of this process.
Sometimes, however, an old-fashioned in-person meeting is needed. Typically, I would view this as a burden: being apart from family, worrying about what’s happening on the home front. Yet, Cisco takes what could be a ‘pain point’ of most jobs, and turns it into an opportunity to show that they value their employees.
Before a recent business trip, my manager asked if my spouse would want to travel along with me – and this was not the first time I was offered this opportunity! Cisco has routinely encouraged my wife, Amber, to join me on my business journeys.
What a concept—growing and exploring together! Amber and I have experienced diversity of culture, climate, and cuisine in San Diego, Salt Lake City, and London—each trip with an adventure to unlock; each city with an endearing quirk to be discovered together.
Up front, it should be said that not everyone’s spouse and/or kids have a schedule that allow for travel with their occupations, school, and other activities taking priority. For this particular work trip to London, three or four of my teammates significant others work remotely or were able to take the time off to be able to join us on their own time and dime. 😉 Inevitably, they were woven into our week in London and were able to show up at the office or by joining us at dinner in the evenings. With that said—I have found Cisco embracing my family to be one of the most unique and compelling reasons to work for Cisco.
Others around me at Cisco have done the same in traveling with their partners, and I love that this enables our team – and our families – to connect and meet each other face to face. It grows our bonds even further as we get to know everyone, and in no time at all, it has taken our relationships as colleagues to something much more: family.
These experiences have given me a different, more three dimensional look, at my co-workers – and my company. In many work places, the relationship you have with your co-workers extends just to the end of the work week. It lives and breathes in Monday through Friday, nine to five – and rarely extends beyond those perimeters. It speaks volumes to me that Cisco encourages me, and all Cisconians, to bring our families into the workplace. And while I already feel respected, cared for, and invested in by Cisco – the simple invitation to include my wife in work activities just grows these feelings even further.
Cisconians work hard together, grow together, and trust me when I say: we have fun together! Whether it’s meeting a deadline, dinner at the end of the day, or an after-work surfing outing (as my team once ventured out on) – we’re there for each other no matter the distance.
Our Cisco People Deal – the “agreement” between Cisco and employees on what the company expects of them and what they can expect of Cisco – says that, “We respect and care for each other. We work, grow, learn and have fun together.”
I cannot think of a way that could be more relevant or uniquely expressed than encouraging me to include my family throughout my journey at Cisco.
Family is at the core of who I am, and by embracing my family, I get the sense that Cisco embraces me as a person—all of me.
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