Silicon Valley visionary John Chambers shares the lessons that transformed a dyslexic kid from West Virginia into one of the world's best business leaders and turned a simple router company into a global tech titan.
When Chambers joined Cisco in 1991, it was a company with 400 employees, a single product, and about $70 million in revenue. When he stepped down as CEO in 2015, he left a $47 billion tech giant that was the backbone of the internet and a leader in areas from cybersecurity to data center convergence. Along the way, he had acquired 180 companies and turned more than 10,000 employees into millionaires. Widely recognized as an innovator, an industry leader, and one of the world's best CEOs, Chambers has outlasted and outmaneuvered practically every rival that ever tried to take Cisco onNortel, Lucent, Alcatel, IBM, Dell, and Hewlett-Packard, to name a few.
Now Chambers is sharing his unique strategies for winning in a digital world. From his early lessons and struggles with dyslexia in West Virginia to his bold bets and battles with some of the biggest names in tech, Chambers gives readers a playbook on how to act before the market shifts, tap customers for strategy, partner for growth, build teams, and disrupt themselves. He also adapted those lessons to transform government, helping global leaders like French President Emmanuel Macron and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to create new models for growth.
As CEO of JC2 Ventures, he's now investing in a new generation of game-changing startups by helping founders become great leaders and scale their companies.
Connecting the Dots is destined to become a business classic, providing hard-won insights and critical tools to thrive during the accelerating disruption of the digital age.
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About the Author
John Chambers, chairman emeritus at Cisco, served as the company's CEO for more than two decades. He has worked closely with government leaders from around the world, serving on committees for two U.S. presidents and earning the first-ever Clinton Global Citizen Award as well as the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship. He is also the founder and CEO of JC2 Ventures, where he helps disruptive startups to scale and lead market transitions.
Diane Brady is an award-winning journalist and consultant who has covered the global business landscape for Bloomberg Businessweek, The Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets. Her previous book, Fraternity, was named one of Amazon's best books of 2012.
Table of Contents
1 The Connected Leader (The Mindset for Leadership Success)
Chapter 1 The Lessons of West Virginia (Disrupt, or Be Disrupted) 3
Chapter 2 Act Like a Teenager and Think Like a Dyslexic (How to Spot Market Transitions) 31
Chapter 3 Dream Big and Be Bold…Focus on the Outcome (Play out the Entire Chess Game Before You Make the First Move) 61
II The Connected Company (The Playbook for Corporate Success)
Chapter 4 Embrace Your Purpose, Not Your Products (How Cisco Beat Its Competitors) 99
Chapter 5 After Disaster Strikes (Setbacks Can Make You Stronger) 116
Chapter 6 My Buyer's Guide to Successful Acquisitions (Based on 180 Personal Experiences) 137
III Connecting with Customers (The Playbook for Shared Success)
Chapter 7 Build Relationships for Life (Sell People Only What They Need) 159
Chapter 8 How to Build a Winning Team (Focus on Culture, Diversity, and Results) 179
Chapter 9 Get Your Message Out (With or Without the Media) 207
IV Connecting Beyond Borders (The Playbook for a Startup World)
Chapter 10 Bet on innovative Leadership (How to Partner with Great Leaders) 233
Chapter 11 What Entrepreneurs Want to Know (13 Typical Questions) 253
Chapter 12 It's All About Startups, Startup Nations, and a Startup World (My Next Chapter and Changing the World…JC2 Ventures) 268
Chapter 13 Reinvent Yourself (What's Next for Me-and All of Us) 285