Director, Associate General Counsel: Product Legal, Optics, & Silicon

Cisco Systems, Inc.
Dec 04, 2023
Dec 10, 2023
Contract Type
Director, Associate General Counsel: Product Legal, Optics, & Silicon

Atlanta, GA; Chicago, IL; Seattle, WA; RTP, NC; NYC, NY

Area of Interest


Compensation Range

253100 USD – 332800 USD

Job Type



Job Id

Cisco, the world's leading networking, communications and security company, is on a mission to empower an inclusive future for everyone. We're proud to be consistently recognized as one of the best workplaces in the world by Fortune and Great Place To Work, and we are looking for exceptional people to join our Legal team.

You will have lead responsibility for supporting Cisco's optics and silicon components businesses, including managing a Legal team and advising business executive partners for Cisco's routing and switching hardware engineering and go–to–market teams.

We are looking for a highly motivated, solution driven and tech–savvy people leader who is excited about working in a dynamic environment and who will:

  • Develop deep knowledge of Cisco's hardware and Silicon One business, processes, and go–to–market strategies.
  • Bring subject matter expertise in component/silicon hardware go–to market, IP protection strategies, and hardware industry regulation.
  • Develop close working relationships with the sales, engineering, operations, and finance teams building and bringing products to market.
  • Provide legal advice across sales transactions, intellectual property, market access and regulatory issues.
  • Adeptly assess and balance legal risk while enabling business outcomes through pragmatic guidance.
  • Manage, energize, and empower a dedicated Legal team.
  • Develop and refine legal strategy for a growing business in collaboration with other Legal team members and business executives.
  • Be a connecting force across cross–functional teams.
  • Lead with problem solving, curiosity, drive, and thoughtfulness.
Who You Are

You must have excellent legal and business judgment, demonstrated people leadership capabilities, strong critical thinking and communication (written and verbal) skills, and a proven work ethic. You should be able to work directly with executives and early in career team members alike, be self–directed, in addition to collaborative and flexible with the ability to thrive in a collegial, fast–paced environment. You must be able to develop and support a dynamic legal strategy for Cisco's optics and silicon component businesses, taking into account legal and business considerations and market conditions. You must problem solve with speed, simplicity and organization and lead with compassion and sound judgment. Advanced executive engagement, social skills, and influencing abilities are a must. Success requires confidence, rigor, diligence and a passion to learn and contribute to the team and the business.

Your Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bar admission in any jurisdiction with good standing, with a minimum of 12+ years of relevant experience at a law firm and/or in–house (the ideal candidate will have both law firm and in–house experience.)
  • Legal experience in the computer or networking hardware industry. A background in semi–conductors is preferred.
  • Outstanding contract negotiation and drafting skills, including extensive experience negotiating complex licensing agreements and working with large customers and strategic partners.
  • Solid knowledge of intellectual property and product development issues, with go to market experience.
  • Strong collaboration skills for close partnerships with business, technical, and Legal team members.
  • Ability to understand and synthesize complex issues, assess legal and business risk, and provide concise, plain English, business–focused advice.
  • Extensive experience in building, developing, and motivating high functioning teams, including in a hybrid world.
  • Ability to build credibility, advocate, influence, and become a trusted adviser to the business and Legal team members.
  • Business–centric approach to handling complex legal issues, while demonstrating grace and a positive attitude.
  • Strong organizational skills and the ability to prioritize, lead and deliver on simultaneous projects/deliverables under deadline pressure.
  • Drive and commitment to contribute to talent development, legal strategy, and cross–functional initiatives across the Legal organization.
  • Humility and a sense of humor.
Our Legal Department

We are a team of 500+ Legal and Compliance professionals in 25+ countries committed to fostering an inclusive and collaborative environment as we work together to drive Cisco's success. We serve as trusted advisors to the business – problem solving, navigating complexities, and enabling transformation along the way. We use technology to make life easier – leveraging Cisco's innovative networking and collaboration tools to enable flexible, hybrid work. And we adopt the responsibility to be a force for good – donating our time and expertise through pro bono and community impact initiatives.

Why Cisco?

. We are all unique, but collectively we bring our talents to work as a team, to develop innovative technology and power a more inclusive, digital future for everyone. How do we do it? Well, for starters – with people like you!

Nearly every internet connection around the world touches Cisco. We're the Internet's optimists. Our technology makes sure the data traveling at light speed across connections does so securely, yet it's not what we make but what we make happen which marks us out. We're helping those who work in the health service to connect with patients and each other; schools, colleges, and universities to teach in even the most challenging of times. We're helping businesses of all shapes and sizes to connect with their employees and customers in new ways, providing people with access to the digital skills they need and connecting the most remote parts of the world – whether through 5G, or otherwise.

We tackle whatever challenges come our way. We have each other's backs, we recognize our accomplishments, and we grow together. We celebrate and support one another – from big and small things in life to big career moments. And giving back is in our DNA (we get 10 days off each year to do just that).

We know that powering an inclusive future starts with us. Because without diversity and a dedication to equality, there is no moving forward. Our 30 Inclusive Communities, that bring people together around commonalities or passions, are leading the way. Together we're committed to learning, listening, caring for our communities, whilst supporting the most vulnerable with a collective effort to make this world a better place either with technology, or through our actions.

So, you have colorful hair? Don't care. Tattoos? Show off your ink. Like polka dots? That's cool. Pop culture geek? Many of us are. Passion for technology and world changing? Be you, with us!

Message to applicants applying to work in the U.S. and/or Canada:

When available, the salary range posted for this position reflects the projected hiring range for new hire, full–time salaries in U.S. and/or Canada locations, not including equity or benefits. For non–sales roles the hiring ranges reflect base salary only; employees are also eligible to receive annual bonuses. Hiring ranges for sales positions include base and incentive compensation target. Individual pay is determined by the candidate's hiring location and additional factors, including but not limited to skillset, experience, and relevant education, certifications, or training. Applicants may not be eligible for the full salary range based on their U.S. or Canada hiring location. The recruiter can share more details about compensation for the role in your location during the hiring process.

U.S. employees have access to quality medical, dental and vision insurance, a 401(k) plan with a Cisco matching contribution, short and long–term disability coverage, basic life insurance and numerous wellbeing offerings. Employees receive up to twelve paid holidays per calendar year, which includes one floating holiday, plus a day off for their birthday. Employees accrue up to 20 days of Paid Time Off (PTO) each year and have access to paid time away to deal with critical or emergency issues without tapping into their PTO. We offer additional paid time to volunteer and give back to the community. Employees are also able to purchase company stock through our Employee Stock Purchase Program.

Employees on sales plans earn performance–based incentive pay on top of their base salary, which is split between quota and non–quota components. For quota–based incentive pay, Cisco pays at the standard rate of 1% of incentive target for each 1% revenue attainment against the quota up to 100%. Once performance exceeds 100% quota attainment, incentive rates may increase up to five times the standard rate with no cap on incentive compensation. For non–quota–based sales performance elements such as strategic sales objectives, Cisco may pay up to 125% of target. Cisco sales plans do not have a minimum threshold of performance for sales incentive compensation to be paid.

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