E88 - Muhammed Rafi at Cisco

Louis Parratt
Muhammed Rafi

By Louis Parratt & Muhammed Rafi

Coming up on this episode of The Route to Networking, Louis Parratt, our IP UK Consultant was joined by Muhammad Rafi, a Sr. Network Engineer at Cisco. Muhammad has worked in the Networking industry for over 10 years and is passionate about all things tech, Automation in particular. Muhammad discusses the importance of being a continuous learner and what skills someone would need in order for them to be successful in this line of work.

Muhammad first started to discover his love and passion for electronics when he was around 8 or 9 years old. His interest in Engineering started when he would play around with electronic toys as a child. He wanted to explore everything from a young age, which resulted in Muhammad developing an interest in Engineering.

After graduating in Engineering, he went on to take his master’s degree in Telecoms and Computer Networks. Coming out of university he landed his first full-time job at BT and then realised that he wanted to go down the networking route, so he took the CCNA certification to enhance his skillset, where he successfully passed on his second attempt.

For Muhammad, the way that you should think about it is that if you start a career in networking, then the skills you need are a strong understanding of network layers – Layer 1, layer 2, and then Layer 3. This will give you a strong base in the subject matter field of networking. The rest is just adding on knowledge as you go along.

Infinite budget…

An interesting answer to this question and something we aren’t usually used to. A strong team with a positive attitude can do wonders. And we’re not just talking about the 9 to 5 grind, but how you interact with your colleagues and customers on a daily basis. Muhammad believes that it’s more important for business teams to work together and bring positivity, no matter if you’re working in a start-up or a large corporation. There are always weak links that slow down the process and it is essential to help them realize their potential, bring them up to speed, help them and work together as a team.


Looking to start your career in the Networking space? Make sure that you are prepared to stay consistent and hungry for knowledge. The more you focus on learning and absorbing new information, the better off you’ll be. Don’t settle for shortcuts, tackle the basics head-on and work your way up to success.

To hear more about Muhammad’s thoughts on a healthy work-life balance, tune into the full episode now!