Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

Summary: Cisco CEO John Chambers said the company has a good strategy, but has lost is way and confused its employees. The upshot is that Cisco plans "a number of targeted moves in the coming weeks."

SHARE:
TOPICS: Cisco
10

Cisco CEO John Chambers said the company has a good strategy, but has lost is way and confused its employees. The upshot is that Cisco plans "a number of targeted moves in the coming weeks."

The Chambers' fix-it memo comes as the company has fumbled recent quarters and disappointed investors. Cisco is under fire from the likes of Hewlett-Packard and Juniper Networks. The issue isn't the market. It's Cisco.

"We face a simple truth: we have disappointed our investors and we have confused our employees," said Chambers in a memo posted on Cisco's blog. "Bottom line, we have lost some of the credibility that is foundational to Cisco’s success – and we must earn it back. Our market is in transition, and our company is in transition.  And the time is right to define this transition for ourselves and our industry.  I understand this.  It’s time for focus."

Chambers then outlined a series of principles for these changes, which will be overseen by new chief operating officer Gary Moore.

In brief:

  • Cisco won't mess with units that aren't broken. "Our five company priorities are established:  leadership in core routing, switching and services; collaboration; data center virtualization and cloud; architectures; and video.  The importance of delivery to market through our partners is also clear – and we will do nothing but reinforce this," said Chambers.
  • Bold steps are on deck. Chambers promised "surgical precision" to fix problems in Cisco's portfolio.
  • Cisco won't be defined by competitors. "Our strategy to extend the role of the network will not change. Our approach to leadership in the core amidst this transition will change. In switching we understand that our customers are buying across broader segments and specific needs in this market. We understand that our competitors in this area are fierce, with different business models and architectures.  We will not be defined by them," said Chambers.
  • The company will simplify work. "We will simplify the way we work and how we focus our attention and resources," said Chambers. "We will significantly rework our systems, tools and funding models to do this."

That final point is worth noting since Cisco has focused on social networking tools to get projects done, surface good ideas and rate managers. Chambers had listed this social push as Cisco's biggest risk.

Topic: Cisco

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

10 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Maybe they'll finally add a retirement plan for their employees. [nt]

    [nt]
    olePigeon
    • They dont have one?

      @olePigeon Or do you mean that they dont have one as lucrative as the one govt employees get?
      otaddy
      • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

        @otaddy
        I'd be willing to bet the executives who are not producing have some pretty lucrative retirement plans though, huh?
        crazydanr@...
  • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

    Cisco really f'ed up Linksys's brand. I hope they fix it.
    m3kw9
    • That was their intention

      @m3kw9 Linksys was eating their lunch at 33% the price of a comparable Cisco product. Their goal was to kill Linksys and they succeeded.
      balsover
      • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

        @balsover <br><br>Cisco really need to get into gear. Actions speak louder than words so instead of telling people what they are going to do to rectify the problem they should just do it . Their credibility can be restored if they act.
        M4ylee
    • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

      @m3kw9 <br>Their push into voice and video did a lot for innovation, but after so many years, Communications Manager is still extremely buggy, not to mention, the dependence on an ISR to connect to the PSTN.<br><br>Further, they isolated the technicians and engineers who served Cisco well by getting CCNA, CCNP, etc, by retiring exams early and increasing the number and types of exams to get certifications. Now the number of CCIE's are decreasing and Cisco doesn't want to acknowledge that. <a href="http://www.sanjosedentistdds.com">dentist san jose</a> | <a href="http://www.yourseattlelocksmiths.com">Locksmith Seattle</a>
      gogiants
  • Cisco's only concern are the investors

    Chambers did not say how they would serve the customers. Cisco lost credibility with customers by insane pricing and aggressive strategies that left customers not trusting Cisco anymore.

    Their push into voice and video did a lot for innovation, but after so many years, Communications Manager is still extremely buggy, not to mention, the dependence on an ISR to connect to the PSTN.

    Further, they isolated the technicians and engineers who served Cisco well by getting CCNA, CCNP, etc, by retiring exams early and increasing the number and types of exams to get certifications. Now the number of CCIE's are decreasing and Cisco doesn't want to acknowledge that.

    Part of what made Cisco great was a strong customer and product focus, and support for open standards. That has all changed.

    I think though that Cisco will continue to dominate for a long time.
    pazmanpro
  • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

    pazmanpro, you make a great point. The customer doesn't exist in any of those statements (of course selective editing on the author's part could account for that.).

    Cisco has added no value whatsoever to Linksys. What was wrong with Linksys before--is still wrong years later.

    I dunno about support of open standards. Cisco has produced a number of proprietary protocols that COMPETE with open standards. And they don't even support their own protocols across their own devices!! Of course, a major reason for that is Cisco equipment WAS made by Cisco. Many lines were purchased from other companies that saw no value in supporting Cisco's proprietary protocols. It's also why there is so much variation in one line of switches to the next. The genesis of several lines came from non-Cisco companies. They bought someone else's great idea. They didn't come up with it. That doesn't make a company a great innovator. But Cisco gobbles up so much, it's hard to tell what they bought, and what they truy gave birth to.
    royalef
  • RE: Cisco's Chambers: 'We have lost some of the credibility'

    I think we are moving back to the days of small book stores. The cycle has been small, to large, to digital. Maybe we can head back to small now.
    biomass fuel http://www.pelletmillguide.com/boiler_used_for_wood_pellets.html
    rayyi