Cisco: Social networking can transform the enterprise

Cisco's own push to integrate collaboration into its operations has run into hurdles, but the technology has the potential to shake up executive roles, according to chief exec John Chambers

Cisco's two biggest gambles are its bet that video will become critical to networks and its efforts to integrate social networking into its operations, according to chief executive John Chambers.

Chambers is keen on running the networking giant on a collaboration framework. He told an audience at a Gartner symposium in Orlando, Florida on Wednesday that trying to change an organisation's culture to adopt social networking is one of the things that makes the shift hard. However, collaboration could lead to business-focused executives taking on a technology role if they are adept at social networking, he said.

"The thing that's about to change for organisation structures is that executives will serve on social-networking groups and be moved based on function," said Chambers.

He also added that Cisco is looking to social networking and consumer technology to help the company generate enterprise ideas. "We moved into the consumer market because we thought a lot of what we would learn would go to business," said Chambers.

For more on this ZDNet UK-selected story, see Cisco CEO Chambers' key risk: Running a company on social networking on ZDNet.com.

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