Sunday, 12 June 2011

Social leadership at Cisco


  Ealier on, Phil Smith, CEO, Cisco UK & Ireland has talked about leadership and social networking at Cisco.

Globalisation, technology and the next generation workforce and changing the way that people work in organisations.  It’s a big social change, although technology has made the change much easier.

Cisco use social networking tools for communications within the company also also externally, eg in graduate recruitment for building relationships with the best students and creaming off the best before the milk round.  These relationships are sustained through onboarding etc.

As for those companies that don’t allow social networking, Phil suggests using technology within a company is a management issue – you can be on the phone all day just as much as you can be on Facebook.

Next generation working also requires an inclusive culture.  People feel they want to work in Cisco because their talents will be respected and developed.

Their programme is ‘More Together’ which does focus more on inclusiveness than diversity.  The best teams focus on everyone’s contribution rather than just on minority groups.

So for example his executive team have recently participated in a goldfish bowl exercise, sitting round a group of brave women having a facilitated conversation about some of the difficulties they were experiencing.  Executives do get shielded but in this exercise they just sat and listened.

Executives area also reverse mentored.  He has a 21 / 21 year old chap who mentors him and helps him understand how others would communicate.

All of this helps Cisco to develop social communities and quickly assemble dynamic teams.


Also see my other posts on Cisco:



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