Cisco, Concerto and Partnership: Lessons Learned from a Cloud Champion

I had the pleasure of attending the recent Cisco Partner Summit in San Diego earlier this month. While we have built the Concerto Cloud utilizing Cisco’s best-in-class technology, it was a priority for us as part of our growing partnership to invest in three solid days of learning, planning and strategizing on how our two companies will successfully win together in the marketplace.

Even though I have interfaced with Cisco many times over the last 25 years, I left excited about the future and came away with some critical points about partnering in today’s cloud world:

1.  We should choose our partners carefully – are you collaborating with organizations that have a history of success? The financial resources to invest in the future? The ability to make key acquisitions to further the value to partners and customers? Needless to say we know that Cisco has historically driven and been a disruptor across key technologies. But what we saw in San Diego was Cisco’s clear ability to remain in the driver’s seat of innovation – with the support of their strategic partners.

Technology must exist to help people and organizations. Great advancements that don’t make life better, businesses more profitable or people happier are not that important. We saw the energy within the Cisco team to create value, not just in supporting IT professionals, but in making lines of business leaders more successful. Ultimately this means driving technology advancements that improve people’s lives in some way and remains something worth doing.

3.  Creating a business community can make us all more successful.
Concerto has always embraced the ‘better together’ concept of partnering - believing that together organizations can accomplish more. Over the time spent in San Diego I was introduced to dozens of players in the Cisco Cloud ecosystem. Some represented the competition, some were technology suppliers and others were companies who could potentially resell our offerings. Cisco clearly and purposefully drives all of these diverse players into an ecosystem that allows us all to win more. This is great for all of our customers and the industry as a whole.

I came away from the Cisco Executive Partner Summit with not just a good viewpoint on what Cisco is doing – but invigorated by a strong validation of our own partnership model and our ability to drive a thriving cloud business together.