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和创始人一起当CEO,是什么感觉?

Jonathan Vanian 2018年12月27日

Salesforce认为,双CEO架构对于公司增长十分重要。

几个月前,商业软件巨头Salesforce任命了基思·布洛克作为公司的联席CEO,与之前长期担任CEO的马克·贝尼奥夫一同工作,Salesforce也成了业内又一家同时拥有两位CEO双核公司。

Salesforce认为,双CEO架构对于公司增长十分重要。布洛克于五年前加盟Salesforce,此前他曾在数据库巨头甲骨文公司就职。Salesforce的软件主要通过云服务交付,目前该公司的股价在130美元左右,较2013年上涨了一倍以上。

布洛克表示,在五年前,Salesforce的客户主要还是美国的中小企业。现在,它的客户已经包括了丰田、美国运通和State Farm等世界知名企业。

在此次采访中,布洛克谈到了他的搭档马克·贝尼奥夫、旧金山的流浪者问题,以及信任的重要性。采访稿有删节。

《财富》:Salesforce为什么需要两位CEO?

布洛克:这一切都是为了帮助公司扩大规模。我们经常讲,到2022财年,要让公司的销售额达到230亿美元(2017年该公司的营收为84亿美元),现在我们把目标定在了300亿美元以上。因而我们希望有一个架构能使我们更快地进行决策,划分权责,攻城略地,专注于我们的优势。

你们以前为什么不能做到这一点?

我们这样做已经有很长时间了。重点是要强化角色和责任,固定一个运营模式。我认为这很重要,因为运营中如果有任何不明确的地方,都会影响效率。

有没有哪些决策是你会做而贝尼奥夫不会做的?能举个例子吗?

比如关于财务部门运作方式、后台基础架构、企业销售策略,再比如与Mulesoft有关的战略问题等等(Mulesoft是Salesforce今年早些时候以65亿美元收购的一家企业软件公司)。

也有些事情需要我们一起做决定,比如进入一个新的市场、收购一家有价值的公司,等等。

我们的公司增长得非常迅速。五年前我们的业绩只有30亿美元,今年我们的业绩已经超过了130亿美元,明年我们要做到160亿美元以上,后年我们要做到230亿美元。因此你不能再用老办法管理公司,你要充分利用之前的成功经验,同时也要添加能帮你扩大企业规模的新流程。

马克喜欢思考公司战略、产品战略和企业文化的问题,而我的优势是公司的日常运营,同时我也非常关注客户。

在你服务的行业里,有没有一个大家共同关注的主题?

一切为客户服务。在本世纪初,大家都十分关注降低成本,这也将始终是一个所有人都关注的话题。另外,所有企业永远都想提高效率。但现在也有一种新的趋势,即全球性的数字化转型现象,转型的目的是为了增长。企业的CEO们也需要增长,你不能自己断了通往繁荣的道路。

最近公众很关注数据隐私问题,这对你们的业务有影响吗?

没有企业因为数据隐私问题找上我们。我们的核心价值始于信任。每家公司都需要有一个数据战略,每个人都要关心信任问题,同样,每个人也要担心安全问题。

你信任哪些公司?

我非常信任State Farm公司,我认为他们的CEO迈克尔·提普索尔德是一名世界级的商业领袖。他非常关心自己的员工,而且在公司打造了一种信任文化。惠普公司的迪翁·维斯勒也是一名世界级的商业高管,我认为他在惠普干得非常出色。巴克莱银行的杰斯·斯特利也出色的扭转了这家银行的局面。

为了扩大规模,Salesforce是否需要进军核心的客户关系管理(CRM)产品以外的领域?

首先,我们所在的市场基本上是由我们自己创造的,它是增长最快的企业细分市场。目前,市场上有做操作系统的,有做数据库的,有做ERP的,也有做CRM的,而CRM是增长最快的细分市场,而且它也将是最大的一个细分市场。我们的增长速度是市场增长率的两倍以上。

所以我认为,坚持我们的重点是很重要的。我们不必像其他的传统公司一样。他们有巨大的产品组合,有些产品之间的亲缘未必很近。你看到他们的情形可能会说:“你为什么要做这个?你为什么要做那个?”

你们为什么要收购Quip(一个文字处理工具)?是要打造一款与微软Office竞争的产品吗?

Quip本身不是一种生产力。但对于一名想提高效率的销售人员或服务人员来说,它天然接近于一种生产力。我们通过收购所做的一切,都是为了这种天然的接近。人们习惯于将Quip看作是一种类似于微软Office的文字处理工具,但它实际上是一个出色的协作工具,我们的每名员工都在用它。

马克·贝尼奥夫经常参与政治活动,在社会问题上直言不讳。这也是你想做的事吗?

我们都对政治和社会问题抱有热情,只不过是以不同的方式。我们有自己的风格。我们都对公司的文化充满热情。如果是一些对我们的员工十分重要的社会问题,我们是会采取坚定立场的。比如你可以看看我们在印第安那州的立场(印第安那州制订了一项法律,要求企业不对同性伴侣提供某些服务,Salesforce对此表示了反对立场)。那项法律让我们的员工感到了威胁和不安,因此我们采取了强硬立场。

在男女同权和同酬的问题上,我们也必须为员工做正确的事情。(Salesforce此前表示,公司已经调整了员工的薪酬结构,消除了所有性别差异。)

最近在“C提案”的问题上,我也跟马克一起谈过。(指旧金山出台的一项提案,该提案拟对部分企业征税,以对流浪者提供资助。)我和我妻子就住在这座城市里,这是一座美丽的城市,流浪者的问题显然是必须解决的。这个问题是整个城市的问题,是整个社会的问题,也是我们的客户所面临的问题。

旧金山的流浪者问题对你们的客户有何影响?

我们的客户希望当他们来到这个城市时,他们是安全的,是受到欢迎的,这里的人是能够得到照顾的。我对马克说,我从来没有见过这样的问题。我曾经在纽约和世界各地工作过,我也曾在波士顿居住过。我们需要做这件事,而且整个公司也支持我们。

其他公司也应该持有同样的立场吗?

大多数公司都会参加一些慈善活动,每家公司都有自己的文化,我认为你必须尊重其他公司的文化。

我认为,人们与我们的政府之间存在某种信任危机,甚至可能与社会组织和企业之间也存在某种信任危机。这产生了一些需要填补的空白。

我认为,通过企业高管和CEO们的大声疾呼,是可以填补这一空白的。公共部门与私营部门应该建立更多的合作。只有政府,或者只有CEO,都是不够的。

我也认为,更多的CEO应该站出来大声疾呼,因为他们代表着成千上万的人。而且这关乎他们的文化和价值。我认为大家不能保持沉默。(财富中文网)

作者:Jonathan Vanian

译者:朴成奎

It’s been just a few months since business software giant Salesforce promoted Keith Block to co-CEO alongside longtime chief Marc Benioff.

Salesforce pitched the move as crucial for growth—something the company is well acquainted with since Block joined Salesforce five years ago after a long stint at database giant Oracle. Shares of Salesforce, known for delivering sales software via the cloud, are now at around $130, more than double their price in 2013.

Five years ago, Salesforce’s customers were mostly U.S.-based small-to-medium sized businesses, Block said. Now, customers include some of the world’s biggest companies like Toyota, American Express, and State Farm.

In this interview, Block talks about Marc Benioff, San Francisco’s homeless problems, and the importance of trust. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Fortune: Why does Salesforce need two CEOs?

Block: What this is all about is to help scale the company. We talk a lot about our goals of getting to $23 billion [in sales] by fiscal year 2022 [the company logged $8.4 billion in revenue for 2017], and we think about $30 billion and beyond. We looked to formalize a model that allows us to make decisions faster, divide and conquer, and focus on our strengths.

Why couldn’t you do that before?

Well, we’ve been doing it for a long period. It’s really about strengthening the roles and responsibilities and formalizing an operating model. I think that’s important because if there’s any ambiguity, then you’re going to have inefficiency.

What’s an example of a decision you would make that Marc now wouldn’t?

Anything from something strategic around how our finance organization is running to our back office infrastructure, or our sales go-to-market [corporate sales strategy], or something with Mulesoft [the enterprise software company Salesforce acquired earlier this year for $6.5 billion].

Something that we’d do together would be deciding on a new market that we think we should enter or an acquisition that we may go after—that sort of thing.

We’ve had a pretty rapid rise. Five years ago we were a $3 billion company; this year we’ll do over $13 billion; next year we’ll do over $16 billion; in two years we’ll be at $23 billion. You can’t run the business the same way. You want to take the best of what you’ve had before and you want to add new processes that will help you scale the company.

What Marc likes to focus on is thinking about company strategy, product strategy, and culture. Really, day-to-day operations is where my strength is, and a lot of focus on customers.

What’s a common theme you’re seeing across the industries you work with?

Everything is about the customer. In the beginning of this century there was this huge push on taking costs out, and that will always be there. Companies will always try to become more efficient. But there’s a new thing going on here—a new global phenomena on digital transformation, which is about growth. CEOs need to grow. You can’t cut your way to prosperity.

Have any of the recent public concerns around data privacy impacted how businesses come to you?

Companies are not coming to us about data privacy. Our core values start with trust. Every company needs to have a data strategy, everybody has to be worried about trust, everybody has to be worried about security.

What companies do you trust?

I have enormous trust with State Farm. I think they have a world-class CEO in Michael Tipsord. I think he’s a great example of a strong executive who cares about his people and whose built a culture of trust. Dion Weisler of HP, Inc., I think he’s a world-class executive. I think he’s done a fantastic job with that company. I think Jes Staley at Barclays has done a fantastic job turning around Barclays.

Does Salesforce have to expand from its core customer relationship management [CRM] products to get bigger?

No. 1, we’re in a market that essentially we created. It’s the fastest growing enterprise category there is. There’s the operating system, there’s database, there’s ERP, and then there’s CRM. CRM is the fastest growing category, and it will be the largest category. We’re growing at over twice the rate of the market.

I think it’s important to stick to our focus—that we don’t try to be like these other legacy companies. They’ve got huge portfolios that are not necessarily adjacent. You have to look at them and say, “Why are you doing this, why are you doing that?”

Why did you buy Quip [a word processing tool] — to create a Microsoft Office competitor?

It’s not productivity onto itself, it’s productivity as a natural adjacent for a salesperson who wants to be productive, or for a service person who wants to be productive. Everything we do in acquisitions is a natural adjacency. People classically think of Quip as a word processing tool, something like Microsoft Office. But it’s a great collaboration tool, and every one of our employees uses it.

Marc Benioff is involved with politics and is vocal about societal issues. Is that something you want to do?

We’re actually both very passionate about it in different ways. We have our own styles. We’re both passionate about the culture of the company. If you look at what’s important to our employees, if you look at the position we took in Indiana [Salesforce opposed a controversial law that would have let companies deny services to same-sex couples]—it was a very strong position involving legislation that made our employees feel uncomfortable and threatened.

When it came to equality and equal pay [Salesforce previously said it adjusted its employee compensation to eliminate any pay gap between genders], we had to do the right thing for our employees.

The whole situation we recently had with Proposition C [Benioff publicly supported the San Francisco measure that would tax certain businesses to fund homeless programs], I remember sitting down with Marc. My wife and I live in the city—and this is a beautiful city, and there’s obviously a problem that has to be addressed with the homeless. It’s a problem with the city, the community, and for our customers.

How does San Francisco’s homeless problem impact your customers?

Our customers want to feel that they’re coming to a place where they’re safe and welcome and where people are being taken care of. I said to Marc, I’ve never seen anything like this. I’ve worked in New York, I’ve worked all over the world, I’ve lived in Boston, and this is something that we need to do, and the company lined up behind it.

Should more companies take these kinds of stands?

Most companies have some kind of philanthropic effort. Every company has its own culture, and I think you have to respect the culture of other companies.

I think we have a trust crisis with our governments and, perhaps, organizations in our communities. I think it’s created a bit of a void that needs to be filled.

I think executives and CEOs can fill that void by speaking out. I think there needs to be more of a public sector—private sector partnership. I don’t think it can be just the government and I don’t think it can be just CEOs.

I do think more and more CEOs have to speak out, because they represent tens of thousands of people. It really is about their culture and their values. I don’t think people can be silent.

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