Tatiana and team on a hike, jumping in the air while their picture is taken. I have always wondered what my biggest passion in life is. What makes me excited about life each and every day? Year after year, those questions stirred in my soul. While it may have taken some time, I believe that if you are open for answers – they will come to you.In the middle of a downpour, it dawned on me! Suddenly, I understood that my biggest passion – where I draw strength and excitement from – is PEOPLE. Yes, ALL OF YOU!

The most talented, enthusiastic, open-hearted, and unique people I’ve ever met are right here at Cisco!

In this moment, I understood, that #WeAreCisco is not another fancy brand moto or marketing campaign – it is so much more. It is our strength, our passion, our common ideas, and successes.

At Cisco, I received my first ever nickname, which is Tat or Tati. I was welcomed back with balloons and happy faces after a three-month absence. We have even celebrated our birthdays together! I have also spent amazing time organizing great events with our employees, and for our employees. Finally, I found my friends, my mentors and most important – my true self – at Cisco.

I just moved from a role as a Regional Process Manager on the Operations Team, where I spent an unforgettable 2.5 years full of joy, learning and growth. Now I am exploring a fascinating path as a Business Development Manager on the Customer Experience Team. And believe me, whichever Cisco team you join, you will always find yourself talking to different people with various backgrounds, cultures, languages, and experiences. We work hard, but we also love to have fun, celebrate each other, and help each other to succeed and grow.

I like to think of myself as a puzzle, woven of thousands of those interactions. I feel every single person I meet fills my inner vessel, either with emotions, knowledge, or experience. And each of you has made an impact on others every day too by being a mentor, teacher, inspirer, or light-keeper.

Tatiana and team hiking in the snow.

I appreciate and am enormously thankful to every single person I’ve met so far on my Cisco journey. Which role do you play for your colleagues?

1. The MENTOR – these are key people in your life that will ask you hundreds of questions (be ready for this ); they might make you feel uncomfortable and all of this to help you to understand your inner self, your role in life and help you to answer your WHY.

2. The TEACHER – remember, everyone knows something you don’t, and you have an expertise in areas others may not. You do not have to know everything! But by surrounding yourself with brilliant minds and sharing the knowledge you have – we will all continue to learn from each other.

3. The INSPIRER – these are the people who will always feed you with inspiration, new ideas and motivation. Most importantly, they help you to believe in yourself.

Tatiana covered in bubbles.

4. The LIGHT-KEEPER – there are days in our lives when we all feel alone or down. But then you meet someone who is always sparkling with energy and your day, and your demeanor transforms immediately too. Those people will always re-charge and share all their positive vibes with you!

5. The CACTUS – yes, we will also meet people who are hard to connect with. But instead of being irritated, choose to be patient and learn from them – at least to know who you do not want to be;)


Our life is beautiful, inspiring, fantastic journey! And ever day we get to decide on how we treat others and treat ourselves. Recognize everyone has a role to play and everyone has something to share with you.

Choose to be the best of yourself and help others to shine along the way! What is your biggest passion in life? I’m glad to say I know mine is now people – and that I am surrounded by the best at Cisco.


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Tatiana Pekhnei

Business Development Manager

Customer Experience (CX) Service Management