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[2009.08.27] The world according to Chambers思科眼中的世界

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发表于 2010-3-18 04:24 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Reshaping Cisco
重塑思科(CISCO)

The world according to Chambers
钱伯斯眼中的世界

Aug 27th 2009 | SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA
From The Economist print edition

Cisco’s chairman and chief executive is stretching his company in all directions. Can it hold together?
思科主席及首席执行官正全方面地拓展该公司。但思科能否合成一体?


JOHN CHAMBERS no longer travels much. That is not for want of energy, of which the boss of Cisco Systems has plenty. It is because he is a proud and enthusiastic user of his own company’s technology. Since 2006 Cisco has been selling a system called TelePresence (pictured above, with Mr Chambers holding forth), which turns awkward videoconferences into pretty lifelike encounters. He pulls all-nighters to talk to customers and colleagues in Europe and Asia.
钱伯斯(JOHN CHAMBERS)不再经常出差。这并不是想节省一些精力,因为这位思科系统的老板已精力充沛。而是因为他以自己公司的技术为傲,并激情十足地使用这些技术。自2006年起,思科一直在销售一种名为网真的应用系统(TelePresence)(见上图)。该系统将视频会议转变为身临其境的会议体验。他通宵达旦地与欧洲及亚洲国家的客户以及同事交谈。

Meet Mr Chambers in the flesh, and the small talk lasts for about five seconds, until he asks: “What do you expect from this conversation?” If he seems to have no time to waste, no wonder. He does not only have a huge company to run, but he is also reshaping it.
与钱伯斯本人会面,寒喧了仅五秒,接着他问道:“你想从本次谈话中收获什么?”如果他看似没有时间可以浪费,这也不足为奇。他不仅要经营一家大公司,也正要重塑该公司。

During the dotcom boom Cisco was hailed as the leading light of the “new economy”, being the supplier of most of the gear guiding data through the internet. In early 2000, when its market capitalisation peaked at nearly $550 billion, it was briefly the world’s most valuable company. But a year later, like other technology giants, it was hit by what Mr Chambers calls the “hundred-year flood”. Cisco did not drown, but much of its stockmarket value was swept away (see chart 1). Since then it has been regarded for the most part as a lowly network plumber: necessary, but dull.
在互联网行业繁荣期,作为用于在互联网引导数据的大部分路由器的供应商,思科曾被誉为“新经济”的领头羊。2000年初,当思科的市场资本额达到顶峰,将近5500亿美元时,那时的思科暂时成为了世界上最有价值的公司。但一年后,与其它科技巨人一样,思科也遭受到了被钱伯斯先生称为“百年不遇的洪流”袭击。思科虽未溺水而亡,但其股值却大幅缩水。自那以后,思科很大程度上被看做地位低下的网络管道工:必不可少,但却呆板乏味。



The company has not been immune from the world’s latest bout of economic troubles. In the quarter that ended in July its profit, $1.1 billion, was 45% lower than a year before. But Cisco, which had revenues of $36 billion in its latest financial year and employs more than 66,000 people, has been making headlines again for different reasons as well. “Cisco plans big push into server market,” read one in January. Another, in March, declared: “Cisco pushes further into consumer territory.” More recently a third said: “Cisco: smart grid will eclipse the size of internet.”
在全球近期的金融危机中,思科也未能幸免于难。7月份结束的那个季度里,该公司的利润额仅为11亿美元,同比下降45%。然而,在最近一次的财年里,总收入为360亿美元,有着超过66000余名雇员的思科,再度以各种原因屡屡见诸报端。一月份,有则新闻为“思科计划大举进军服务器市场”。而三月份另一条新闻则宣称:“思科进一步切入消费者领域”。最近又有了第三条新闻:“思科:智能的电网将使互联网规模相形见绌。”

In other words, the plumber is branching out. As well as making these unexpected forays away from selling network gear, Cisco is exploring other sidelines. From “virtual health care” to “cloud computing” and “safety and security” to “routers in space”, the company is tackling more than 30 “market adjacencies”, as new areas of growth are called in the corporate argot. Mr Chambers expects to keep adding more. He hopes that at least half will be successful and generate 25% of Cisco’s revenues within five to ten years.
换句话说,思科正不断发展其它业务。除了销售网络路由器,发动上述让人意想不到的袭击外,思科也在拓展其它的副业。从“虚拟医疗保健”到“云计算”及“安全和保障”再以“空间路由器”,该公司正涉足超过30种“市场邻近行业”,用行话来说,即增长的新兴行业。钱伯斯先生希望不断开拓更多行业。他希望,至少半数行业会成功,在未来的5到10年内占到公司营业额的25%。

Some on Wall Street worry that Mr Chambers, who has been Cisco’s boss for 14 years, is stretching his company so thinly that it could be ripped apart. Mr Chambers, not surprisingly, sees the expansion, seemingly in all directions at once, differently: as a bold attempt to achieve two things. He wants Cisco to become the main supplier of the essential elements of an increasingly connected economy, and to be a shining corporate example of how to use them. It should provide not only the tools of the company of the future, but also its organisational model.
一些华尔街人担心,执掌思科14年的钱伯斯先生将公司业务铺得太开,可能会使公司分崩离析。不足为奇的是,尽管公司似乎染指各行业,但钱伯斯并不这么看。他将公司的扩张看作是一举两得的大胆尝试。他希望在经济联系日益紧密的今天,思科能成为该经济中最基本元素的主要供应商,同时,成为如何使用这些基本元素的耀眼企业范本。思科不仅要为未来企业提供工具,还有组织模式。

Even at the height of the dotcom boom, people had only the vaguest grasp of Cisco’s business. Its physical incarnation was easy to picture: hardware such as routers and switches, which direct traffic through a network. But Cisco also made a lot of money from services, for instance by helping customers to maintain those networks. It was always a software firm as well, providing the dominating operating system for internet-type corporate networks. This mixture goes a long way towards Cisco’s dominance in the networking market and its high gross margins (64% in the most recent quarter): firms have continued buying Cisco gear not least because it works best with IOS (originally Internetwork Operating System), as the software is called.
即便在互联网最繁荣时期,人们对思科的业务也仅限于最模糊的认知。其有形的业务很容易描汇出来:诸如通过网络来引导数据流向的路由器和交换机等硬件设备。但思科也从服务上挣了许多钱,例如帮助客户维护网络。同时,思科还是家软件公司,为互联网类型的企业网型提供域名操作系统。这种软硬件结合的模式对思科主导网络市场大有稗益,并让其获取很高的毛利润(最近的一季度的毛利润为64%):公司不断购买思科的路由器,尤其因为它与被称之为互联网操作系统(originally Internetwork Operating System)的软件最为匹配。

Cisco also has a record of being willing to reorganise itself. It was an early outsourcer of manufacturing, for instance. Many of its products are never touched by a Cisco employee, but built by a contract manufacturer, tested remotely and then shipped directly to the customer. Cisco was also one of the first big IT companies to let others do much of its R&D. To plug holes in its product portfolio or react to market demand, it bought dozens of other networking firms and perfected the difficult process of integrating them.
思科也有着自发重组的记录。例如,过去它曾是一家早期的生产外包商。该公司的许多产品就连其雇员也从未接触过,而是由契约制造商开发,远程测试,并直接运给客户。思科也是最早一批让其他人涉足其大部分研发工作的大型IT公司之一。为了堵住其组合产品的漏洞,亦或应对市场需求,思科购买了几十家网络公司,并完美地攻克了整合这些公司的难题。

The once-a-century flood, however, did not just wash away nearly a third of Cisco’s revenues in a single quarter. It also laid bare the limits of the firm’s business model. Its core markets, routing and switching, had matured: they would never again boast the annual average growth rates of more than 50% that drove Cisco’s revenues from $1.2 billion in 1994 to $18.9 billion in 2002. The firm was also running up against the law of large numbers, which makes it more difficult for big companies to grow rapidly. And however efficient the supply chain, networking gear is bound to become a commodity eventually.
然而,这场百年不遇的洪流并不仅仅只是冲洗掉了思科单一季度里近1/3的收入。它同时也暴露了公司业务模式的局限性。其核心市场(路由器和交换机)已经成熟:他们将不再以超过50%的年平均增长率而引以为荣,这种年平均增长利率让思科收入自1994年间的12亿美元上升到2002年期间的189亿美元。另外,公司的运作也曾一度有违于大树法则,该法则使得大型企业快速增长变得更加困难。但无论供应链多么高效,网络设备最终注定会成为一种低廉商品。

The obvious remedy was to move quickly into new businesses promising more value. Some companies would have begun gently, with one or two; Cisco went for half a dozen, including optical networks, wireless equipment and internet telephony. Today these “advanced technologies”, as they are called internally, bring in 25% of Cisco’s revenues (see chart 2). This branching out has been institutionalised and expanded. Hence the 30 market adjacencies.
向着能产生更多价值的新行业快速转型是显而易见的良方。有些公司已小心翼翼地开始尝试一两种新业务; 而思科则开始了近半数新兴行业,包括光纤网络,无线设备以及互联网科技。如今,这些“先进技术”为思科带来了25%的收入。这种拓展已被制度化并进一步扩张了。于是,30个周边行业也是如此。



These are best seen as a portfolio of business bets, much like those of diversified companies such as 3M and General Electric (GE). Yet Mr Chambers is keen to point out how Cisco’s collection is different. “GE’s is comprised of individual pieces. The light-bulb group doesn’t tie into the jet-engine group,” he explains. “Our pieces are all tied to the network.”
这些均被视为公司业务的组合,与那些多元化的公司(比如3M以通用电器)有异曲同工之处。然而钱伯斯则欣然指出思科系列的与众不同之处。他解释道:“通用电器由许多个独立的业务组成。灯泡集团与喷气发动机集团并没捆绑在一起。而我们的业务全部都与网络有关。”

This gives Cisco a huge and growing field to play on. The world is getting more and more connected. Sensors and chips, for instance, are being embedded in everything from cars to appliances, pipelines and even livestock. But there is a clear danger with such a grand vision, of rushing into anything and everything. So Cisco feeds putative projects through a series of filters. Is this something customers want Cisco to do? Is the opportunity big enough and does it create demand for Cisco’s hardware? Can Cisco offer something that is really different and become number one or two in this market?
这使得思科在一个巨大并不断增长的领域里能大展拳脚。这个世界的联系正与日俱增。譬如,感应器和芯片正不断嵌入到各式产品当中,从汽车到家用电器,管道,甚至被安装到家禽身上。但这一宏大远景的危险性也显而易见,即盲目并仓促扩张业务的危险性。因此,思科通过一系列筛选来判断项目是否可行:这就是客户想让思科做的吗?这机会足够大吗,能否为思科的硬件创造市场需求?思科能提供一些真的与众不同的东西,并成为市场上数一数二的公司吗?

Just as important is the question of whether a new project fits in with the way Cisco sees the network, be it within a company or at home: as a platform for all kinds of applications. “Their long-term strategy is essentially to become the Microsoft of the internet,” says Richard Windsor, an analyst at Nomura International, an investment bank. Just like the vendor of Windows, Cisco has a family of interlinked operating systems and platforms. In much the same way as IOS, these are supposed to drive demand for Cisco gear and make the firm a dominant force in new markets. Many of Cisco’s moves are thus about building beachheads for platforms, says James Staten of Forrester Research, a firm of consultants.
同样重要的一个问题是,新的项目是否与思科看待网络的方式相符:即无论是面向公司或家庭,网络都像各种各样应用软件的平台。“他们的长期战略就是从根本上变成互联网的微软。”来自华侨国际投行的分析师Richard WindsoR如事说。与WINDOWS的供应商同出一辙,思科有一系列相互联系的操作系统和平台。思科期望这些操作系统和平台能与网络操作系统一样,促进思科设备的需求量,使其成为新市场的主导力量。因此,思科的许多举措都是为了构建平台的堆栈。

Another way of looking at Cisco’s stretching exercises is what Jeff Evenson, an analyst at Bernstein Research, calls “application-specific networking”. The firm is betting that it can make a lot of money by combining networking gear with software and hardware specific to an industry, for instance electric utilities. “Cisco wants to offer similar services to IBM and HP—but with fewer people,” says Mr Evenson.
用Bernstein研究公司的分析师Jeff Evenson的话来说,看待思科扩张的另一种方式就是“针对特定应用的网络”。思科认为,它能通过将网络设备和特定用于某个产业(例如电力)的软硬件结合在一起,赚得钵满盆满。Evenson先生称,“思科想以更少的人力提供类似IBM和HP那样的服务。”

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The prime example of all this is video, which Cisco believes will in the long run account for a lot of communication among both businesses and individuals. The company estimates that the amount of internet traffic accounted for by video communication will increase tenfold by 2013, twice as fast as traffic overall. This deluge of data can only be managed with more and bigger routers and switches, such as Cisco’s Nexus 7000, which can handle 15 trillion bits, the equivalent of 1,350 feature-length films, every second.
最主要的例子莫过于视频。思科认为,从长远来看,视频将成为公司及个人所运用最多的交流方式。该公司估计,截止到2013年,视频交流占互联网总流量将增加10倍,比所有流量的增长速度要快两倍。纷至沓来的数据只有用更多像思科NEXUS 7000等这类较大容量的路由器才能管理。思科Nexus 7000路由器每秒能处理15万亿字节,相当于1350部长篇电影。

To get an even bigger slice of the video pie, Cisco developed TelePresence, the first unit of which was sold in December 2006. It combines big, high-definition screens, spatially sensitive microphones, custom video-processing technology and networking equipment. What is more, setting up a TelePresence meeting is as easy as making a telephone call. Facilitators are no longer needed.
为了分得更大块视频蛋糕,思科开发了网真应用系统,首套于2006年售出。它结合了高清晰的大屏幕,高灵敏度麦克风(可是这里空间感该怎么译?),定制的视频处理技术和网络设备。更重要的是,设置一个网真会议像打电话一样容易,不再需要协导人。

Cisco intends to push TelePresence into the home. This is the main reason why it bought Scientific Atlanta, a maker of set-top boxes, for $6.9 billion and, more recently, spent $590m on Pure Digital Technologies, maker of Flip, a range of hand-held camcorders. TelePresence at home will soon be combined with another project: sports and entertainment. The firm intends to turn stadiums into multimedia temples—and eventually to pump the match-day experience into living-rooms. Mr Chambers hopes one day to watch North Carolina against Duke, archrivals in American college basketball, with his sister while they are linked by TelePresence.
思科意图将网真推向家庭。这也是思科为何花费69亿美元收购有线电线视讯转换器制造商亚特兰大科技公司(Scientific Atlanta),最近又花了5亿9千万美元收购生产可携式摄像机FLIP的制造商Pure Digital Technologies。家用网真系统不久将与另一个项目捆绑在一起:体育和娱乐。思科拟将体育馆变成多媒体教堂---并最终    钱伯斯先生希望某天能与妹妹一起,通过网真系统,观看美国大学篮球界的北卡罗来纳队(North Carolina)与劲敌公爵队(Duke)之间的比赛。

Such scenarios will be possible only because all Cisco’s video products are based on the same platform, called Medianet, says Tony Bates, one of the executives overseeing the firm’s video strategy. Thanks to Medianet, for instance, the network can reformat a video so that pictures taken by a small camera can be seen in high definition on a computer or television screen. This, says Mr Bates, will happen in real time. “You could take your Flip camera and stream that directly to a friend’s TV.”
掌控思科视频战略的高级执行官Tony Bates表示,这些情景将可能实现,因为思科所有的视频产品均基于同一个名为Medianet的平台。Medianet使得网络能重新设定视频格式,这样,用小型相机拍的照片可以在电脑或电视机屏幕上看到。Bates先生表示,这些会在现实生活中发生。“你可以带上FLIP相机,将数据流直接发送到朋友的电视机里。”

Cisco’s other market adjacencies can be analysed in the same way. Another big one is consumer electronics, perhaps the most surprising new territory. Here too, Cisco can add a lot of value, says Ned Hooper, who heads the firm’s consumer group. More and more devices come with a connection to the internet, but their content—pictures, videos, music—is mostly still tied to one device, he argues. Cisco’s new digital stereo system, for instance, allows music to move wirelessly around the home. Again, Cisco’s consumer products have a common platform.
我们可以用同样的方式来分析思科的其它周边市场。另一个大市场要数消费电子产品,这或许也是最另人惊讶的新领域。公司消费者小组的负责人Ned Hooper称,思科也可以从这块业务上挣些钱。他认为,越来越多的设备与互联网相连,但他们的内容---图像,视频,音乐---仍在很大程度上与一个设备捆绑在一起。举个例子,思科新的数码立体声系统可以让音乐无线萦绕在家里。思科的消费产品也一个相同的平台。

In the case of servers, souped-up computers that dish up data, the market shift Cisco intends to ride is virtualisation. In essence this means that the servers in a data centre are turned into a pool of computing power to be tapped into as needed rather than being used individually. Virtualisation creates a lot of complexity, to which Cisco has found an answer, says Robert Lloyd, who heads the group that has developed what Cisco calls the “unified computing system”. Its parts—servers, storage disks, memory—are held together and managed by a powerful switch running Nx-OS, one of Cisco’s operating systems.
就服务器(可以容纳数据,为了加快速度而改装过的电脑)而言,思科试图掀起的市场浪潮是服务器虚拟化。从本质上来讲,这意味着数据中心的服务器变成了盛放计算能力的池子,根据需要进行分配,而不会单独使用。已开发出了思科称之为“统一计算系统”(Unified Computing System)的小组负责人Robert Lloyd表示,服务器虚拟化提出了许多复杂的难题,而思科已找到答案。该系统的组成部分---服务器,储蓄器,内存条---会联合作业,并由一部运行着思科NX-OS操作系统的强大交换机管理。

Finally, with its “smart grid” initiative, Cisco wants to repeat for electrical power grids what it has done for corporate networks: unify the ways in which the parts of the grid talk to each other and then add intelligence. Home appliances, meters, transformers and generators could all share data and work together to make the power grid more efficient, for example by lowering the peak load.
最后,凭借着成为互联网“智能电网”的初衷,思科希望将自己在企业网络中所采取的模式复制到电网领域:统一电网各个部分的交互方式,然后再添加智能化元素。家用电器、电表、变压器和发电机都可以分享数据并协同工作,从而通过降低峰值负载等方式使电网变得更高效。

For all the energy Cisco is devoting to seeking new markets, the changes it is making to its institutional structure are equally important. Whether they turn out well or badly, they are likely to be instructive to other companies too.
思科在积极拓展新市场的同时,同样十分看重组织结构的调整。无论最终结果是好是坏,这些改变对其他公司来说,可能都会有些启发意义。

Cisco has already altered its organisational structure once, after the dotcom bubble burst. The firm had been comprised of three lines of businesses: gear for telecom operators, large enterprises and smaller businesses. This had become wasteful: the lines of business duplicated a lot of work, for instance by developing similar routers. Having to cut costs, Cisco centralised the functions of each line. Employees were no longer mainly organised around customer segments but on functional principles: engineering, manufacturing, marketing and so forth.
在互联网泡沫爆发后,思科已调整过组织机构。此前,该公司一直由三种业务部门构成:分别针对电信运营商,大企业和较小点的公司提供设备。这种结构很浪费:各业务部门产生了很多重复工作,开发相类似的路由器就是一个例子。为了消减成本,思科将每种业务的职能集中化。雇员不再因为客户所在的市场来划分部门,而是按职能来划分:工程,制造等等。

A functional structure is more efficient, but it also has big drawbacks. It often leads organisations to be too cost-conscious, to create standardised products and to ignore the needs of different types of customer. Co-operation between functions can be limited. To overcome these flaws, explains Jay Galbraith, a noted management consultant, most big companies move back and forth between a decentralised organisation along lines of business and a centralised functional structure.
职能化的结构更为高效,但它也有较大的缺陷。这通常会让组织更关注成本,而生产出通用产品,从会忽略掉不同客人的需求。部门之间的通力合作受到了限制。管理顾问Jay Galbraith表示,为了克服这些缺陷,大部分大公司会游离在分散化组织结构与集中化职能组织结构之间。

The plumber’s new pipework

The plumber’s new pipework
管道工的新管道工作

Cisco took a different tack. Instead of going back to a structure based on lines of business, it has developed an elaborate system of committees made up of managers from different functions. The job of most of these groups is to tackle new markets. “Councils” are in charge of markets that could reach $10 billion. For “boards” the number is $1 billion. Both are supported by “working groups”, which are created as needed. There are about 50 boards and councils, with some 750 members. Cisco has given up counting the working groups, because they come and go so quickly.
思科的做法与众不同。没有延用以业务部门为基础的结构,反而自创了一套精细的委员会体制,该委员会由来自不同职能部门的管理者组成。应对新市场是这些组织最主要的工作。“理事会”负责利润可以达到100亿美元的市场。而“委员会”负责的则是利润能达到10亿美元的市场。他们都由按需创建的“工作小组”支持着。这样的董事会和理事会总有约50个,大约750名成员。思科已不再统计到底有多少个工作组,因为这些小组频繁创立频繁解散。

Such attempts to combine a functional structure with cross-functional groups, called a “matrix”, have mostly failed, says Mr Galbraith, who recently published a book on matrix organisations. They often produce gridlock: managers representing the functions and those having an eye on markets cannot agree. But Cisco seems to have avoided such blockages.
将一种职能结构与跨职能团体结合在一起的方式,也称之为“矩阵型”组织结构。最近出版了一本关于矩阵组织的作者Galbraith先生称,大部分矩阵型组织的尝试以失败告终。这些结合通常会僵局:代表许多职能的管理者与那些关注市场前景的人意见产生分歧。然而,思科似乎已避开了这些问题。

For one, the firm developed what Mr Galbraith calls a “culture of collaboration” from the top down. Mr Chambers cultivates a co-operative management style. Some councils do without a formal leader and function more like a sports team. Many managers have leading roles both in a function and on a council or board, which fosters co-operation. How well managers do in teams determines 30% of their bonuses. There have been casualties: whereas those who work well with others have been promoted, lone fighters have been pushed out. As a result, a fifth of Cisco’s leadership has left the company.
原因之一,思科自上而下建立了一种Galbraith称之为“协作文化”的体制。钱伯斯培育了一种合伙管理方式。一些理事会没有正式领导,像一支体育队那样行使职责。许多管理者身兼数职,他们任职于职能小组领导的同时,也可以是理事会或委员会的领导,这便培养了合作精神。经理人在团队中的表现决定了他们30%的红利。这种文化体制淘汰了许多领导者:那些与其他人合作良好的人被升职,而孤军作战者则被踢出局。结果,思科1/5的领导人离职。

Second, Cisco has given itself a kind of constitution. There are “replicable processes”—jargon for rules covering how the groups are set up, how their work is evaluated and how decisions are taken. There is also a “common language” in which groups must describe their work. Each has to come up with a statement that includes a five-year vision, a two-year strategy and a ten-point execution plan. This not only imposes discipline but also makes decisions transparent.
其次,思科自创了一套章程。章程中含有“可复制流程”----行话即,如何成立部门,如何评估部门工作,如何下决定等一些制度。另外,还包括部门描述工作时所运用的"共同语言"。每个部门提供一份声明,其中包括五年远景,两年战略,10条执行计划。这不仅可以加强纪律,也使决策变得透明。

Third, the firm—to borrow a choice Silicon Valley expression—eats a lot of its own dog food: digital tools that allow cheap and efficient communication. These include wikis, social networking and web-based collaboration services, of course. But the most important tool is TelePresence, so that nuances such as body language and tone of voice, essential ingredients of face-to-face meetings, are no longer lost. The number of TelePresence meetings at Cisco averages 5,500 a week. This has also helped the firm to cut its annual travel budget by $290m, or more than half.
第三,套用硅谷的一套说法---吃了许多自已的狗粮,即思科自产自销了许多产品:能进行廉价与高效交流的数码工具,包括维客,社交网络和基于网络的协作服务。当然,最重要的工具要数网真了,这样,像肢体语言,语调等面对面开会的基本元素不会丢失。思科每周平均要进行5500个网真会议。这也帮助公司每年节省了29千万美元的差旅费,或半数还有多。

“It has taken us seven years, but now it is a machine,” says Mr Chambers. What could still go wrong? “Lots of things.” One of his main worries is that Cisco does not have sufficiently replicable processes in place to keep things on track. What about the seemingly clear risk that the company could spread itself too thinly? “My gut-feel is actually that I’m not spreading us thin enough,” Mr Chambers says. If people have “aggressive stretch goals”, he believes, they will think more broadly.
钱伯斯称:“这花了我们7年的时间,但现在,思科像台机器。” 还有什么不妥?“很多事情。”他最担心的一点,就是思科没有足够的“可复制流程”使事情照计划进行。至于思科可能将自己拉得太薄,可能会有风险一事该如何看待?钱伯斯则表示:“我觉得我们拉得还不够薄。”他认为,如果人们拥有积极的“拉伸”目标,他们一定会想得更广。

Picture Partnership
描绘合伙蓝图

And send to grandma’s TV

Its internal workings could get too complex, argues Mr Galbraith, and the firm could suffer from matrix migraine after all. The structure, he says, is still a work in progress; Cisco still has to work out, for instance, how best to assemble and disassemble teams. What is more, the set-up may make the company move too far from its origins as a network plumber. A case in point, some say, is Cisco’s line of consumer products, whose creators clearly were engineers, not designers. To make them successful, the firm may have to create a separate line of business.

Galbraith先生认为,思科内部工作可能变得太复杂,公司最终将饱受矩阵型结构组织“偏头痛”之苦。他表示,这种结构仍在发展当中,思科仍要规划出如何完美地建立和解散团队。此外,建立太多团队可能让其离网络管道工的初衷相去甚远。一些人表示,思科的消费产品业务就是一个恰当的例子:很明显,该业务由工程师创办,而非设计师。要让这些业务成功,公司得创建一个独立的业务部门。

Even if the system works as billed, it has been costly in one important respect: the loss of many talented people. And with all those groups and endless meetings, burnout is still a real danger, points out Geoffrey Moore of TCG Advisors, a management consultancy that has worked with Cisco. Senior executives are members of three to five groups on average and some of many more. This is on top of the regular job and means TelePresence meetings at all hours.

即使体制成功运作,其成本也十分高昂:失去了许多有才之士。来自与思科合作过的TCG管理咨询公司的Geoffrey Moore先生指出,领导这么多的团队及无休止的会议,让人身心疲惫,这仍是真正的危险所在。平均来说,思科的高管每人都会在三到五个团队中任何,有些甚至更多。这些都是在常规工作之上的工作,意味着时刻要开网真会议。

Why then has Cisco’s boss taken his company into unchartered organisational waters? For one, because he believes he has no choice. It is not just that Cisco needs a structure that can help the firm to react quickly to new opportunities. The matrix also makes it much easier to come up with entire solutions rather than stand-alone products. This is what many customers, particularly governments, now demand. And the structure helps Cisco to become a globally integrated company by making it easier for executives from all around the world to weigh in.

那为何思科老板要趟这浑水?原因之一,是因为他认为别无选择。这不仅仅因为思科需要一种能够向新机遇迅速作出反应的结构,还因为矩阵型结构也使思科更容易地制定出全盘解决方案,而非单一的产品。这正是许多客户(尤其是政府部门)眼下所需要的。这种结构使全世界的思科管理层能够加入,从而帮助思科成为一家一体化的全球公司。

At the same time, implementing such an unusual structure is a huge opportunity. It allows the firm to be a showcase for its own products. Some think it could even become a model for the corporation of the future. Rosabeth Moss Kanter, a professor at Harvard Business School, regards Cisco as an example of a “supercorp”, a coinage that is also the title of her new book. It has avoided the fate of many other companies as they grow: becoming a lumbering and bloated giant. Tom Malone, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, sees Cisco as a pioneer for a larger trend. Traditionally, he says, management was about “command and control”. Now, as technology makes communication much cheaper, bosses should move to a more flexible view, best described as “co-ordinate and cultivate”.

与此同时,实施这一不同寻常的结构是一个巨大的机会。这让思科可以展示自己的产品。一些人认为,这甚至可能会成为未来企业的一种模式。哈佛商业学院的Rosabeth Moss Kanter教授将思科看作为一个“超级大公司”的典范。这是一个新词,也是她新书的书名。思科成功地避免了其他许多公司在成长过程中的命运:逐渐变了一个笨重且臃肿的巨人。麻省理工大学管理学院的TOM MALONE教授将思科看作为未来较大趋势的先驱。他称,从传统意义来讲,管理就是“命令与控制”。如今,随着科技让沟通更便宜,老板们的观念应该更有弹性,对管理的最好描述应该是“协作与培养”。

Given its track record with other institutional innovations such as acquisitions and outsourcing, Cisco has a good chance of coming to exemplify a new world of “co-ordinate and cultivate” in the same way that GE stood for “command and control”. If this does not come to pass, it will not have been for want of ambition. After all, Mr Chambers’s goal, as he recently put it, is nothing less than for Cisco to become “the best company in the world”.

鉴于思科以往在并购和外包等领域中的体制创新记录,该公司完全有机会成为榜样,引领“协作与培养”的新世界,一如通用电气在“命令与控制”所起的作用。只要这一目标没有实现,思科就不会缺乏雄心壮志。毕竟,钱伯斯表示过,他的目标是将思科打造成为“全球最优秀的公司”。
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发表于 2010-3-18 04:24 | 显示全部楼层
一段
all-nighter:something that continues for the whole night, especially a party这个词翻译有问题
话说TelePresence翻成“网真”真是不错
三段
briefly: 这里说的是时间短
Cisco did not drown, but much of its stockmarket value was swept away (see chart 1). Since then it has been regarded for the most part as a lowly network plumber: necessary, but dull.漏了

四段
这也让思科因为各种原因,一直是新闻头版头条
这句话我的理解和你不同。觉得原文的different就是它的收入和员工vs后面列举的三条理由呢
另外,那个make headlines不一定就是上头条,侧重表示的是各媒体纷纷报道。make/grab (the) headlines also be in/hit the headlines:to be reported in many newspapers and on radio and television
五段

虚假医疗保健  是虚拟。。。囧

as new areas of growth are called in the corporate argot. 这句应该是解释的前面的“market adjacencies”吧,就是说这个“market adjacencies”才是argot的表述
generate 25% of Cisco’s revenues within five to ten years.应该是在5到10年内占到公司营业额的25%

六段
Mr Chambers, not surprisingly, sees the expansion, seemingly in all directions at once, differently中间没有译到。“不足为奇的是,尽管公司似乎染指各行业,但钱伯斯并不这么看。”后面可以直接说“一举两得”哈
connected economy宜翻译成“联系日益紧密”
七段
physical incarnation这里的翻译有点生硬,我建议你用“有形的业务”来说
八段
perfected the difficult process of integrating them.完善的整合?应该是“完美地攻克了……的难题”
九段
the law of large numbers:大树法则
十段
说的是思科的30个“market adjacencies”(不要看到后面忘了前面哦^^)他们也institutionalised and expanded

以上是我师傅IRINI的点评。
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1. all-nighter:
我没查字典就断章取义了。看到后面有个ER,我以为是名词,就来了个夜猫子。
我改了:通宵达旦。
网真不是我创造出来的。是网上查到的。这明显不是我这种水平能创造出来的撒。

2. briefly: 我翻了字典,并改成了“暂时地”
3. 漏译的地方我补了。
4. 这也让思科因为各种原因,一直是新闻头版头条,还有DIFFERENTLY。我全句改了:
改成收入是。。。有着多少多少名雇员的思科,再次因为种种原因屡屡见诸报端。
make headlines我错了,我看到HEADLINE就译成头条了。我晚上翻了字典,查了网上的一些解释,改成:见诸报端吧。
5. Mr Chambers, not surprisingly, sees the expansion, seemingly in all directions at once, differently中间没有译到。
我不是没有译到,我译不出来,就一笑而过了。哈,原谅我。
你舞文弄墨,文采斐然。我直接借用了你的句子。
6. physical incarnation 译的时候我词穷,纠结无比,实在不知道如何表达,就直译了。我借用了“有形的业务”。
7. perfected the difficult process of integrating them.完善的整合?应该是“完美地攻克了……的难题”。
有些不明白。我再想想。
8. the law of large numbers:大树法则???大数法则,又称为大数定律。
9. 说的是思科的30个“market adjacencies”(不要看到后面忘了前面哦^^)他们也institutionalised and expanded
对,这句话我理解错了。应该是那些BRANCHING OUT institutionalised and expanded,HENCE, 这30个周边行业也如此。
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发表于 2010-3-18 04:25 | 显示全部楼层
这篇太长了。我周二下午译完了这些,后面还有小半篇。今天下午译完后再发上来。
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发表于 2010-3-18 04:25 | 显示全部楼层
evayangping  

我已经帮你把原文补全了,希望你尽早把剩余的译文发上来:victory:
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终身成就奖英语达人才华横溢优秀斑竹二级笔译三级笔译

发表于 2010-3-18 04:26 | 显示全部楼层
我晕死!
我早就译完了,想到有另外一位也译完了,我也没管了。
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