I couldn’t be a successful Cisco leader if I didn’t focus on delivering the best possible business outcomes to our customers. At Cisco, we are committed to delivering customer and shareholder value through world-class products, services and support. But the other side of this commitment is that the quality of our service depends on the quality and focus of our people. We all go through changes in our lives that demand extra time and attention. I believe that the better we support our employees through those changes, the better they’ll be able to serve our customers.

That’s why I’m proud to be an executive sponsor of two new global programs to support our people in moments that matter in their lives—whether they be the milestone moments of welcoming a new child into their family, or the challenging moments of responding to an emergency:

  • Becoming a Parent: We’re expanding the minimum time off and support to parents who welcome a new child into their family, whether someone is having a baby, adopting, going through fertility treatments, or surrogacy. While the length of the leave varies from country to country, the minimum global leave for primary caregivers is 13 weeks, and supporting caregivers can take at least four weeks for bonding with the new child. And the program isn’t limited just to parents. We recognize that people are staying in the workforce longer, so grandparents in the Cisco community can also take a few days off to bond with a new grandchild. The program is effective now in United States, and then will be available globally in phases by country.
  • Emergency Time Off: When someone faces an emergency, such as a death in the family, an illness, a natural disaster, or some other urgent situation, they need to give it their full attention. Effective globally now, this program enables an employee to take additional time off to deal with family emergencies without worrying about how much personal time off (PTO) they have available. The program is intended for short periods of time, and not expected to total more than four weeks per year—but we’ll always discuss the employees needs and support them in the best way we can. And recognizing that we all create our families differently, we define “family” as anyone an employee relies on or who relies on them, whether that means a stepparent, grandparent, sibling, domestic partner, or even a roommate.

I’m proud that Cisco is continuing to ramp up the support we give our employees in the life-changing moments everyone faces from time to time. It’s part of “Our People Deal” to respect and care for each other, and always do the right thing. These new programs embrace both of those values.

It’s about caring and doing the right thing for our employees. But it’s also about the strength of our talent. When people can take the time they need for their families, they’ll come back to work refreshed and energized. That’s where innovation can happen.


Joe Cozzolino

Senior Vice President

Cisco Services