Light Reading

2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents

Craig Matsumoto
News Analysis
Craig Matsumoto
10/4/2012
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As most Americans prepare to pick one man for their president, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) has gone and picked two.

Rob Lloyd and Gary Moore both got promoted Thursday, adding "president" to their titles.

Lloyd, who's been head of Cisco's sales force, is now president of development and sales. Executives reporting to him include Chuck Robbins, who's taking Lloyd's old job; Pankaj Patekl, who remains chief development officer; and Wim Elfrink, who remains chief globalization officer.

Moore remains chief operating officer as well as president. He's been in charge of the restructuring Cisco initiated in 2011.

Why this matters
Cisco's chain of succession is suddenly a big topic, with CEO John Chambers having indicated he's starting to think about retirement.

Chambers recently explained he has a list of 10 possible successors that gets reviewed quarterly by the board of directors. Lloyd and Moore, already at or near the top of that list, would seem to be his top two internal choices.

Both are part of Chambers's inner circle. It's not a surprise that they'd be promoted -- Chambers did tell Bloomberg in September he expects to spread responsibilities around at Cisco. But their new positions open the question of whether the board would look for a CEO to essentially continue Chambers's philosophies.

For more



— Craig Matsumoto, Managing Editor, Light Reading

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shygye75
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shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:47 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


The 1961 Chicago Cubs had four different managers (actually, they were called Head Coaches) on the coaching staff (called the "College of Coaches") who were swapped in and out during the season. The Cubs ended up losing 90 games that year, but then again that's a lot better than they did this season. But even the Cubs had only one guy in charge at any given time.

Pete Baldwin
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Pete Baldwin,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:19:45 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


I'm sure Cisco appreciates the comparison to the Cubs. :)  Hey, at least it implies they're lovable...


... well, theoretically.  Why Everyone Hates the Chicago Cubs

shygye75
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shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:44 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


The only business sector I know of that makes a habit of appointing multiple presidents is the movie industry. Not exactly the most stable and predictable of models.

ethertype
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ethertype,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:42 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


Banks are just as good as studios at title inflation. Also not a great model to follow.


This is what happens when you promote too many people to SVP, so you have to promote some SVPs to EVP and wind up with too many EVPs.

shygye75
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shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:40 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


xVP inflation is common. Co-presidencies are rare. If the co-presidents aren't of one mind, then confusion can easily take hold. And if they are of one mind, why have two of them?

ethertype
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ethertype,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:40 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents
It's not a "co-presidency". They're just super-extra-special VPs with a misleading title.
shygye75
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shygye75,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 5:19:39 PM
re: 2 Execs Become Cisco Presidents


If you don't call a duck a duck, it could end up thinking it's a chicken. The tell will be how long (or short) a leash the new presidents are on.

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