I’m not that easily impressed – and I’m pretty jaded – just ask my wife and kids, but I have always been – and continue to be – impressed by the innovation coming out of salesforce. I can say – at least for me – that if I had accomplished all that SFDC had accomplished in 10 years, I’d be SUPER happy to just sit on my butt and rest on my laurels. It’s really good they don’t feel like I do!
The author of this article argues that it’s a 3 point strategy to their success – and I mostly agree (but I have my own take on the 2 employee related ones – see the next paragraph). They maintain that the Product line continues to innovate, and they’re right. When I started with salesforce 10 years ago, Dashboards were the cutting edge – really! Think about what’s come since – AppExchange (the 1st business Marketplace), Workflow, an exposed API (not that new, but they’re API is EASILY the best we work with), Chatter, Service Cloud, Pardot, Radian 6, Buddy – on and on and on. And – if you saw my last post, they are hinting at unveiling Business Intelligence. Just a super product that gets better every year. and customers want to stay because of that (or come on board)
Employees – and I guess every high tech company owes its success to people – since software isn’t tangible – it really comes down to the people who create it – sell it and maintain it. And I agree with the author on employee focused innovation and in letting the teams take the reins and ride, but I boil it down a little further. Salesforce hires cool people. With rare exceptions (and in the exceptions, they’re gone quick), salesforce hires people who “get it” and who can articulate “it” really well. The SE’s I work with are brilliant – same with the sales teams. And alot of the managers have known me since THEY were reps – and they do a fantastic job of perpetuating the culture for the new guys.
I always sound like a commercial for these guys, but I fell pretty lucky to be a partner I have to say.