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Marc Benioff by Danesha Vasquez Story

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Biography of Marc Benioff as a leader in all parts of life, written by Wharton MBA student for a course on leadership from the point of view of the whole person.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Marc Benioff by Danesha Vasquez Story

  1. 1. MARC BENIOFFDANESHA VASQUEZ STORY
  2. 2. ● Sold his first application in high school ● Went to Oracle to get some sales experience ● Started Salesforce in 1999 Lesson 1: Keep looking for meaning ● Marc Benioff decided to leave Oracle, at the height of his success with no plan for what to do for the future. ● He took a leap of faith and went on a spiritual awakening trip in India and then Hawaii ● On this trip in Hawaii, is where he came up the idea for Salesforce Quotes: "When I came to Oracle, I was 21 years old. When I was 25, I was the youngest VP. I was very successful. I had what I thought I wanted. My million-a-year salary, my social life, my condo. But there was something more that I wanted." The epiphany that led him to start Salesforce occurred while he was swimming with dolphins during one trip to the Aloha State: "I asked myself, 'Why aren't all enterprise software applications built like Amazon and eBay?'" Take aways: Most people spend their whole lives building up security - finding good jobs, working hard to keep them, saving money. Finding the courage to give that up when you know you are on the wrong path is extremely challenging. Marc Benioff reminds me that staying on the wrong path is not the best thing to do. Money and security can be built up again and again so it isn’t completely crazy to let it go once and awhile.
  3. 3. KEEP LOOKING FOR MEANING Lesson 1: Keep looking for meaning ● Marc Benioff decided to leave Oracle, at the height of his success with no plan for what to do for the future. ● He took a leap of faith and went on a spiritual awakening trip in India and then Hawaii ● On this trip in Hawaii, is where he came up the idea for Salesforce Quotes: "When I came to Oracle, I was 21 years old. When I was 25, I was the youngest VP. I was very successful. I had what I thought I wanted. My million-a-year salary, my social life, my condo. But there was something more that I wanted." The epiphany that led him to start Salesforce occurred while he was swimming with dolphins during one trip to the Aloha State: "I asked myself, 'Why aren't all enterprise software applications built like Amazon and eBay?'" Take aways: Most people spend their whole lives building up security - finding good jobs, working hard to keep them, saving money. Finding the courage to give that up when you know you are on the wrong path is extremely challenging. Marc Benioff reminds me that staying on the wrong path is not the best thing to do. Money and security can be built up again and again so it isn’t completely crazy to let it go once and awhile.
  4. 4. INTEGRATE YOUR VALUES Lesson 2: Integrate Your Values ● When starting Salesforce, Marc Benioff implemented the 1-1-1 model, where the company gives 1% of Profit, Time, and Products to nonprofit organizations. ● Since 2010, Benioff and Lynne have donated $250 million to local children's hospitals Quotes: “when it comes to philanthropy, I have one pitch, and it's been the same since the founding of our company 13 years ago: the 1/1/1 model of integrated corporate philanthropy. The 1/1/1 model, like Salesforce.com's business model, operates on a "pay as you go" model.” Take aways: As a former Salesforce employee, I was struck by how impactful the 1/1/1 model was in practice. You don’t have to think about work and community life as two distinct buckets. In fact, bringing your community involvement into thwe workplace can help create bonds and experiences that will enhance the workplace and the work you do. Don’t be selfish. It can seem like you can’t afford to give back. Always remember there are people less fortunate than yourself and giving back doesn’t always have to mean writing a check - soup kitchens, tutoring centers, suicide hotlines are all in need of people to help as well.
  5. 5. PLATFORM FOR CHANGE Lesson 3: Platform for Change ● Marc encouraged other large companies to follow along and adopt the 1/1/1 model (including Google ● He paid extra to put his name on the building of the childrens hospital to encourage others to pledge to causes ● He has developed movements to use the power of business to correct unjust legislation, gaining support from many other CEOs ○ Indiana bill that would allow businesses to discriminate agains LGBT community ○ Georgia with similar anti-gay legislation Quotes: “I didn't really want to [put my name on it] but they made a good case (and it's actually worked out) that we would inspire others,” “businesses are the greatest platforms for change in the world” Take aways: It is important to help others see the light if you want to make a difference. Use all the tools available to you if you believe in a cause
  6. 6. INNOVATE Lesson 4: Innovate ● Forbes’ World’s Most Innovative Company (Forbes: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015) ● Gives personal money to help get great ideas off the ground (personal source) ● Takes constant risks on unproven ideas and challenges people who do it the same as before (internal salesforce) Quotes: “Benioff often emphasizes the importance of a “beginner’s mind” — the openness and willingness to learn that often comes with a lack of subject-area expertise.” “Companies must not only see innovation before it is obvious to the market but also have the courage to pursue that innovation years before it’s accepted, or even understood.” Take aways: Don’t get too comfortable with the status quo. If you aren’t getting excited to look for new ways to get excited, you are going to get left behind. I plan to take this lesson into all walks of life (keep finding new activities for family, creating new ways to improve the education system, new ways to work more efficiently, new ways to relax and unwind)
  7. 7. Sources: Me as an employee https://www.forbes.com/sites/bruceupbin/2012/09/18/talking-philanthropy-with-marc-b enioff/#427cf1206b2e http://www.businessinsider.com/9-things-to-know-about-marc-benioff-2014-9 https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/guide-to-individual-donors/marc-benioff.html http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/adoption-of-salesforcecoms-111-model-ac celerates-around-the-world-85034902.html http://www.salesforce.org/pledge-1/ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/07/marc-benioff-indiana_n_7017032.html http://fortune.com/2016/02/26/salesforce-marc-benioff-georgia-gay-marriage/ https://www.salesforce.com/company/awards/company.jsp#2016 https://www.salesforce.com/blog/2013/10/marc-benioff-how-to-pursue-innovation.html https://www.salesforce.com/blog/2016/08/marc-benioff-decades-top-innovator-forbes. html

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