Recently my team in the Cisco Data Center Software Group got together for a game of bubble soccer.
“What is bubble soccer?” you ask. It’s only a game involving giant inflatable orbs of fun!
More specifically, it’s a combination between zorbing, a sport where a person rolls down the side of a hill in a giant plastic orb or ball, and soccer. In bubble soccer, you get into a plastic orb-like structure, which is constructed in a way that allows your legs to run freely while wearing it.
The objective is to score goals against the opponent and knock each other down. It’s a perfect recipe of competing and being silly. During the game, I got knocked over many times. The first few falls were surprising and took time to get up and get back on your feet. But as the game progressed it was fun to get down and we all learnt to recover quickly. While playing, I was reminded how falling can be fun and even more so when you are not alone!
This got me thinking, how at Cisco we do the same in our day-to-day life. We love to solve the most challenging and complex problems. Being the aspiring engineers we are, we set lofty goals.
Often times, when working on something new, you need to get your hands dirty, you take some risks, things may not go in the direction you initially planned on. In such projects, how you and your team adapts to failures can be the key to success. “Fail but fail fast, get up, recover and solve the problem” this is the mindset we are encouraged to have by our leaders, our peers and by our culture. This is one of the great things about working at Cisco.
You see, at Cisco, we’re allowed to fall and then we get back up. This environment gives us room to grow, to be flexible, to be more innovative and to have the will to take risks. We can make these failures stepping stones to success and win.
Thinking back to the game, its insightful how simple game of bubble soccer can teach us teamwork and help develop strength in the face of failure. Successful teams are made by working together, collaborating and breaking boundaries. At the same time we also have fun in a healthy way! All in all, we had an awesome experience running around in plastic orbs. With this newfound perspective, I spent the rest of day pleased and happy with what I learnt and proud of the culture and environment that Cisco sets up for its people to innovate and rise up in face of any challenge.