Legendary Silicon Valley visionary John Chambers shares his playbook and philosophy that transformed Cisco into a global tech titan and now inspire a new generation of leaders.
Over 20 years, John Chambers transformed a company with 400 employees and one toaster-sized product (a router) into a tech giant that’s the backbone of the Internet. Along the way, he’s outlasted and outmaneuvered practically every rival that ever tried to take Cisco on-Nortel, Lucent, Alcatel, IBM, Dell, and Hewlett-Packard, to name a few-and turned more than 10,000 employees into millionaires, more than any company in history. When Chambers stepped down as executive chairman in December of 2017, he left a company that didn’t just shape the first Internet era but is leading the next wave of innovation in areas from cyber-security to self-driving cars.
Now, in collaboration with award-winning journalist Diane Brady, Chambers shares the stories and strategies that helped his company win again and again through multiple market shifts. 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 developed a series of playbooks for beating the odds and staying on top. He shares the playbook that helped Cisco buy 180 companies with a track record that’s now studied at business schools worldwide. He explains how he built winning teams and a distinctive culture, and created a process for spotting market shifts and managing through periods of disruption.
Perhaps the most powerful playbook from Chambers is the one that’s still being formed: how to reinvent yourself. He is adapting his playbook for government, becoming a trusted advisor to global leaders to create new models for growth. He’s coaching a new generation of leaders of game-changing startups. Now, he’s taking those lesson to West Virginia to transform his home state into a digital leader.
Connecting the Dots is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand how to lead and win in a digital world.