An excellent post from Eyvonne Sharp highlights one of Cisco’s weakest areas, its enduring passion for too many products, too many options, too much complexity:
With that in mind consider Cisco, a company in love with complexity. They’ve built their business making complex systems. Their culture breeds nerd knobs. They’ve built certification tracks — through which many network engineers have built their careers — to develop expert level understanding of their products.
At the same time, engineers operate in a culture were we believe configuration and operational complexity have inherent value. We unconsciously embrace the following logic: Networks are complex. One must be smart to understand networks. I understand networks. Therefore, I’m smart.
We extrapolate this logic and believe that complexity, for complexity’s sake, makes us superior. In truth, our pride has tied gordian knot with complexity and we don’t know how to unravel it.
Using SD-WAN as a use case to highlight Cisco’s love of its own complex technology instead of radically redefining itself. Cisco has limited traction in SD-WAN space because its current technology is hard to design, harder to operate and lacks features. While the business units are doing their best to make it simple, building on top of 30-year old IOS packet technology is unlikely to dominate the market.
Cisco’s Identity Crisis: Complexity, Pride, and SD-WAN : http://www.esharp.net/ciscos-identity-crisis-complexity-pride-and-sd-wan/