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boozon
boozon
12/5/2012 | 5:05:23 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Bigbro,


it sounds like you assme that these lay offs are unavoidable.


Is that true? We all know that Cisco needed to do something about the current situation. To lay off people in order to fix the bottom line is one of the easisest things the top management&nbsp; can do. Can't you expect more than that from a good management team? Isn't it worth telling the Cisco management what managers usually tell their employees: work smarter! And: do more with the same resources (as opposed to: do the same with less resources, as they plan to do)!


B.

Stevery
Stevery
12/5/2012 | 5:05:22 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;the extremely complex structure created by the councils and boards&nbsp;


I never did understand that decision. &nbsp;The structure sounds like it's asking for trouble.

BigBro
BigBro
12/5/2012 | 5:05:22 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Yes, of course layoffs were inevitable. I agree that it's management's fault: they hired way more people than they ever should have, to work on projects that never should have existed. The problem is that avoiding layoffs by "working smarter" isn't possible: what, pray tell, are you going to have all those folks work on smartly?!?


I agree that it's sad that the ones bearing the brunt will be the "innocent bystanders", although, as I said earlier, every big company eventually accumulates some "deadwood", and with &gt;70k employees, that would be 3,500 people in the "bottom 5%" right there.


The bigger problem for Cisco is that this kind of thing demoralizes the really good people, who have other options in good times and in bad... and, frankly, at least for top-notch technical talent, right now is a *great* time to look for alternatives -- there's a talent war going on in the Valley.

DocFord
DocFord
12/5/2012 | 5:05:21 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


I think it is important to note that the Councils and Boards&nbsp;were developed by Chambers and Chambers&nbsp;was defending the creation of the Councils and Boards not more than three weeks ago on MSNBC. And now Chambers says that it is the Councils and Boards that are the major road block in the decision making process. Which I agree with all one needs to do is look at the CDO Org (insiders know about&nbsp;CDO and the lack&nbsp;of leadership). With all the back tracking that JC has done it is only helping to fuel the fires that Cisco is rudderless at the moment.

BigBro
BigBro
12/5/2012 | 5:05:19 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Chambers set up the committees and boards so that he would never be blackmailed by individuals like Mario Mazzola, Luca Cafiero, et. al., for a third time... "Fool me once (Andiamo), shame on you; fool me twice (Nuova), shame on me."


Instead of setting up committees that weaken individuals, he should have fostered an abundance of bench strength talent, so that when Mario/Luca threatened to leave (again, again), he could have had the balls to say "Arrividerci! Don't let the door hit ya on your way out!"

comtech3
comtech3
12/5/2012 | 5:05:18 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Cisco is a classic case of a company biting off more than it's stomach can accomodate! Their first mistake was to acquire Scientific Atlanta, a company that makes the worse set-top boxes.The only bright spot for SA were their cable distribution systems,but overall, a sinking ship.By buying SA, Cisco's vision was to corner the market by taking away customers from Motorola.Big mistake.They went on to acquire Linksys, then piss home users off by removing features from the Linksys routers that they were accustom to.Sales plunged as a result.Then came the other huge mistake when they purchase that company that made the flip camera.If anyone needs to go at Cisco, are the people who made those greedy and costly decisions,and not the hard workers at the bottom of the totem board.

RON2000
RON2000
12/5/2012 | 5:05:18 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Good point regarding Mario / Andiamo/ Nexus. However this points out that the real big change cisco needs is John retirement (early or not). remember why Mario started Andiamo (Don Listwin , Arrowpoint aquisition etc.&nbsp; if I remeber correctly ), remeber&nbsp; Cerent (not part of what is leftover from Pirelli )&nbsp; etc aquisitions which went nowhere , remember Giancarlo departure after John announced that will stay 5 more years and creation of the councils. What about emerging technologies and digital signage , telepresence , physical security and building automatization aquizitions.


I started to have a feeling that John cannot find / retain great people around him (this is why went back to crescendo group leadership a few times). So seems to be a John problem...

crazy4geek
crazy4geek
12/5/2012 | 5:05:17 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Cisco remains a very profitable company with industry mindshare. &nbsp;That said, they need to act now before the correction is too little too late. &nbsp;Their switching line,a critical part of the portfolio, is underperforming both in terms of margins and technical development. &nbsp;In addition, Cisco has some segments which need a serious examination for restructuring or closing all together. &nbsp;For example, their consumer segment had -49% YOY growth. Hopefully Cisco does this right, making reductions in very specific areas which will fortify the company for the future, rather than just sacrificing little "guys" across the board to satisfy the Wall Street gods. &nbsp;The last time Cisco faced the need for such restructuring, they started with reductions in unnecessary, non-customer facing travel, cell expenses as well as an early retirement program. &nbsp;By doing so, I believe Cisco was able to cut $1B in yearly expenses, which is the amount John Chamber said they were looking to cut in his recent earnings call. &nbsp;Oddly, in this call I heard no reference to other cost savings methods - only layoffs and early retirement. &nbsp;It appears to me that the Wall Street gods are in search of blood and only the words "workforce reduction" will appease them!

Pete Baldwin
Pete Baldwin
12/5/2012 | 5:05:16 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


Well, they don't have travel savings to lean on this time thanks to TelePresence -- so that's one less trick they could reference on the call. &nbsp;But given the way companies work in general, I'm sure they've built up some fat since the last time that can be trimmed.


You're right about Wall Street being out for blood. They do expect to hear about layoffs in situations like this, regardless of how that affects productivity and/or the company's knowledge base.&nbsp;

DCITDave
DCITDave
12/5/2012 | 5:05:15 PM
re: Cisco Preps for Layoffs


I had a similar discussion about cloud services last week. In the short term, companies want to put IT infra "in the cloud" so that they can get some of that infra (and some of the people who manage it) out of the building and off their payroll. I really haven't yet heard of that many new services build via the cloud -- just old ones being made more efficient so enterprises can manage opex. Or cut jobs. Or both.


And, if I may, you should see http://jobs.lightreading.com if you or anyone you know has been cloud-enabled right out of a gig.


ph

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