Before the new year, Brink Tully described three factors that have influenced Cisco’s shift to solution selling especially for Full-Stack Observability (FSO). As Brink described,  our customers’ FSO strategies are typically driven by transformational buyers, who want us to engage consultatively and target solutions towards business outcomes. Our FSO go-to-market strategy has been developed in direct response to this shift.

The FSO Design Thinking Workshop is a ready-to-deploy workshop-in-a-box that will help your pre-sales team engage consultatively and deepen their relationships with their customers. It’s designed to accelerate your FSO pipeline, and set you up for a smooth deployment, by helping you to co-create a vision for operational transformation.

FSO is an ongoing strategy and investment for our customers.  That means successful FSO engagements take a deeper and wider view of the customer’s application landscape, operational capabilities, and business priorities. Observability solutions also reach across multiple IT domains, including applications, networking, cloud, SRE, DevOps, and security, so it’s imperative to engage with and ensure alignment across these teams.

The FSO Design Thinking Workshop provides a common language and reference point to help align diverse stakeholders, link technical and operational requirements to quantifiable business outcomes, and energize your customer by developing a shared vision for observability.

An applied example of this workshop at work is with a Cisco top 5 partner and their financial institution customer. This customer is in the early stages of their digital transformation journey and their environment is evolving quickly. Operationally, the networking team, which is driving the observability initiative, is taking on a wider responsibility for application monitoring. Their journey started by deploying AppDynamics to monitor one business-critical application.  While the deployment met their initial objectives of gaining visibility into the performance of the on-site application components, they wanted to explore how to gain deeper insights through a full-stack approach.  Their partner and Cisco account team realized that there was an opportunity to help their customer explore, define, and execute on a long-term observability strategy.

That’s where the FSO Design Thinking Workshop comes in. The partner’s FSO specialist team and Cisco co-facilitated discussions with the customer’s network and application teams to understand what was top of mind for both groups and what impact those had on overall business outcomes.

So far, we’ve seen several outcomes from these exchanges with both the partner and their customer. Now, there is a clearer communication path and engagement between IT teams. The IT team then collaborated to open up a dialogue with line-of-business executives.  A follow-up Design Thinking session with senior executives and their applications teams uncovered new requirements and opportunities.  The partner is also working with the IT team to evolve their existing deployment to include additional use cases – Application Dependency Monitoring, Digital Experience Management, and integration with their existing ITSM platform – which would then serve as a template for expanding FSO coverage to other key applications.

Design Thinking is a perfect approach to FSO opportunities because it facilitates deeper and wider engagement, creates bridges between IT teams and between IT and business leaders, and helps your customer develop and gain buy-in to an observability strategy that will drive future business.

The Design Thinking Workshop is available to all FSO Specialized Partners.  We will work with you to help you adopt and operationalize this into your sales process.

Email us to set up a consultation!


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Dave Liebman

Technical Solutions Architect

FSO Partner Team