When Alex Bard sold his last startup Assistly for $80 million to Salesforce, he said a big reason he took the offer was to get a chance to work closely with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.
Indeed, for the next five years, Bard was one of Benioff’s top lieutenants, running Salesforce’s Service Cloud unit, which is now its second largest business with nearly $2 billion in annual revenue.
Bard left Salesforce in 2014 to join a company called Campaign Monitor, an email marketing software maker with $250 million in funding.
Although Bard is no longer part of Salesforce, he says learned a lot from Benioff. In a recent conversation with Business Insider, Bard shared three things that he liked so much at Salesforce, he implemented them at his current company:
– V2MOM: Benioff pioneered a concept called V2MOM, a management guideline that stands for vision, values, methods, obstacles, and measures. Salesforce makes sure it addresses these five areas before making any big decision. “It’s an incredibly great way to get people aligned and prioritise on the things that you need to do to succeed,” Bard tells us.
At Campaign Monitor, an Australia-based company, Bard slightly changed it to “V2MUM,” to make it sound more Australian. The “U” stands for “unknowns,” he says.
– 1-1-1 Model: Salesforce is famous for the 1-1-1 model, its philanthropic principle that pledges 1% of its equity, products and its employees’ time to charity. Bard has put the same model in place at Campaign Monitor, which has resulted in thousands of employee volunteer hours given to the community.
“You want to make giving a core part of what you stand for. It helps you recruit really great people, it helps you connect the company to what you’re doing day to day, and brings great outcomes not just for your customers, but for humans,” Bard says.
– Customer obsession: Benioff is notorious for his customer-centric attitude. It’s why he makes his [email protected] email address public. Bard says it’s one of the most important lessons he’s learned at Salesforce. “You’ve got to be fanatical about customer success,” he says.
At Campaign Monitor, Bard has made customer obsession one of the five core principles of the company. “One of our core values is ‘If our customers kick arse, we will too.’ The ultimate outcome is helping your customers become more successful and that’s a great lesson many of us have learned from Marc [Benioff],” Bard says.
Perhaps, Bard seems to be doing things right. Campaign Monitor has over 150,000 customers now and is expected to hit $100 million in annual revenue this year, a solid 30% growth from last year, according to Bard. It’s doubled its workforce to over 200, and best of all, the company’s profitable, he adds.
“The real importance is that we’re growing at a meaningful number, but thoughtfully and profitably,” Bard says. “We’re executing the business really well.”
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