“It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.”

That was the quote I used by W. Edwards Deming, a 20th century engineer and physicist, to open up my collaboration breakout session at Partner Summit back in March. Obviously, it’s tongue-in-cheek, but the point is clear.

We’ve spent the last year together at partner events around the world putting our heads together to work through change. We are on a course to move to cloud and recurring revenue, and there have certainly been a few challenges and learning experiences along the way. Together, we have been through leaps of faith, painful realities, setbacks, and even brief episodes of denial.

But we have also experienced breakthrough innovation, overcome obstacles, and seen many of our risks pay off. As a result, we can look forward to the new calendar year with great optimism, knowing that together we’ve built a strong foundation in technology and go-to-market on which we can accelerate our business.

As 2016 comes to a close, I am thankful for our ongoing relationship and the continued trust and mutual investment it rests upon. We have taken the time to meet, share, listen, and propel our partnership forward. I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished, and we have so much more to anticipate in 2017, starting with a monumental collaboration launch on January 24. We’ve all been waiting for this, and it’s going to be another big step forward for on this shared journey! Please register for the Partner Regional Launchcast to get a preview of everything we’ll be announcing. You’ll also want to register to attend the virtual event where you can see the live stream of Rowan Trollope’s and Chuck Robbins’s keynote.

Cisco is way ahead of the curve on strategy and vision for enterprise collaboration. We know you believe in this portfolio. Every day, you choose to sell Cisco collaboration, and as a result, we had our best year ever in 2016. More than 90 percent of that record-setting business was booked by you! You are such a tremendous part of our past, present, and future.

The best is yet to come. More change for sure, but we are going to do more than survive. We are going to soar in 2017! Happy holidays!


Gary Wolfson

Director, Global Partner Software Sales