It started in 2016 when we hosted two Partner Summits in the same year.  That’s when we really began to walk the talk of recognizing our partners as an extension of our sales force. Alignment is one of Wendy Bahr’s guiding principles for our mutual success, and moving Partner Summit to follow GSX, our annual sales kickoff event, is one of the ways we create greater alignment between Cisco sellers and partners.

Our partners, who account for 85 percent of Cisco sales, play a critical role in shaping our business strategy and taking our solutions to market so you need to be looped into Cisco news, education, and customer conversations at every opportunity.

The newest opportunity to align is Cisco Live. For the first time, we are creating a dedicated partner track at this traditionally customer-focused event for IT professionals. Partner Days, June 26 – 28 in Las Vegas, will give you first-hand access to cross-architectural content and the chance to network with customers and other partners. With Tuesday’s announcement of “intent-based” networking systems, it is sure to be an exciting event, as we usher in a new dawn of networking.

The opportunity to profit through software sales and recurring revenue just got a lot bigger. If you’re a collaboration partner, you’re already well down this road with the Cisco Spark platform and Flex Plan. To lead our customers through digital transformation, it’s more important than ever to build your lifecycle practice, focus on software selling, and modernize our customers’ installed base.

I hope to see you next week at Cisco Live where you’ll hear all the latest about the new network. Be sure to attend the two collaboration innovation talks: “The 90s Called – They Want Your Workplace Back,” presented by Jens Meggers at 5 pm Monday, June 23 and “Worried about Putting Your Data in the Cloud? Good, You Should Be,” presented by Jonathan Rosenberg at noon, Thursday, June 25.  Stop by the Collaboration Partner Village where 22 of our partners will showcase and demo how they work with Cisco. Partners who attend will also be able to meet 40 of our collaboration customers on Wednesday afternoon when they tour the partner pavilion. Let’s take advantage of this new way to align.


Gary Wolfson

Director, Global Partner Software Sales