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Cisco tech hiring and human resources styles (right vs. wrong)

Cisco TAC, Consulting/Advanced Services, generally hire contractor: (Red Badges) for 6 months, and up to several years and rarely convert them to direct hire: (Blue Badges).

Tallahassee, Florida:   Sun, 10/25/15 - 3:53pm    View comments

Francine KatsoudasCiscoBrad asked me for my opinion on what I thought Cisco HR SVP, Francine Katsoudas, should be doing right and perhaps what she's doing wrong.

So, here are some of my thoughts on the subject.

Obviously, you may and/or may not agree with me.


  • Hire smarter people than what he or she the hiring manager is looking to fill for the given role.
  • Allowing a small and or larger group of smarter people to work on Teams together, as long as they can admit that in the past with new data that their ideas/theories may have been wrong to set aside this and continue to positively collaborate together going forward.

    We all can't be 100% every time and under every circumstance.

    You don't need to have only 1-2 All Stars.

    We can have teams of all Grades 12/13's working on innovative software/subscription/cloud products and be revolutionary together and all receive higher stock awards as Spin-In or new M&As Teams.

  • Managers should not be in charge of an employees performance and or income raises and rather be an enabler, such as being a good person, and not to be evil.
  • While identifying your bottom 5% to include in termination/layoff/restructuring, first actually relocate them to other jobs within the company and to find what they naturally gravitate towards and perform the best at in the present day and time.

    It not uncommon for employees to be good at one thing for a period of time and then their strength and weakness and aspirations change.

    Additionally people could very well have been placed into the wrong roles to begin with and it been given a clear job descriptions on first hire and or every year that they get a new supervisor/manager.

  • Executives are usually the last people to admit that they were wrong before in the past and because of their high level ideas & theories and all are not always put up to the validity test at that time or post mortem.
  • Using so much heavy negative criticism is very counterproductive with employee reviews/mentoring, and statistics shows that it is nearly 10 times as more powerful as a general pat on the back, such as a atta boy, or good job.

  • Cisco Sales Engineers are never contractors: (Red Badge) and always are hired as direct hire blue badges.

    Thus providing the Sales & Sales Engineering Teams immediate Perks & Benefits Packages that the TAC & Consulting/Advanced Services Teams new hires may or may not ever get to have and are used as a carrot and stick motivation tactics to exploit them, with low conversion percentage rates and the first to be let go, even when Cisco hits the Wall Street quarterly numbers.

    Creating an unhealthy work place environment between the Sales & Services Teams.

    You can say a sort of privileged elite on one side who does very little work and goes home at 5P and the other side that can work 24-36 hours straight and be forced to work grave yards on the weekends and holidays.

  • Depending upon if you were hired from the outside and or as an internal transfer, if you were from the outside, then Cisco Sales generally tries to target hiring at Grades 9-10s for these type of roles and or make you move laterally internally from another organization into it and leaving no short or midterm career advancements for the employee and having to start all over again with another hiring manager and Team.
  • Cisco TAC, Consulting/Advanced Services, generally hire contractor: (Red Badges) for 6 months, and up to several years and rarely convert them to direct hire: (Blue Badges).

    This results in unfair and unpaid overtime being worked, lack of medical, dental, vision, 401K benefits commission/bonuses being paid out and are terminated within the same week frequently, leaving no job stability and aspirations for further career advancements.

    Even though during the interview process you are asked if you could see yourself here for the rest of your career and not making any moves in the the next 5 or more plus years and leaving an unfair commitment to the company by the employee and not being reciprocated by Cisco.

  • Cisco as we all know has annual layoffs and reorganizations.

    This leaves employees with a new supervisor every year, who is not aware of your past accomplishments and forced to start unfairly all over again, even though they previously existed in the department and not the supervisor or manager.

    But as soon as you build up new accomplishments, the Cisco Senior Leadership comes along every summer and/or winter and slaps you back down again and the sick cycle of putting you under a new supervisor/manager who generally is not qualified and it starts all over again.

  • Cisco Employee Relations & Human Resources Teams are not neutral between management and the employees and don't let the employees voice be truly heard and acted upon, rather they shield the corrupt Senior Leadership and guide them on what are the best ways to terminate the bottom 5% on each Team and also those between the Grades of 11-14 in favor of Grades 6-8, because they are only looking to maximize the Cisco Senior Leadership Stock Payouts and the Investor's shareholder profits.

    A great example would be a manager going in and changing an employee's comments or a review after the comment period has ended and creating a low and/or negative rating for the employee and then unjustly not paying an employee their target 90-100% of their Bonus of 15-35% depending on your grade level, when the customer satisfaction: (CSAT) goal was met and or exceeded as well as the Team and Company Goals.

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