A fun family reunion. That’s how Salesforce describes their annual Dreamforce conference. The entire global Salesforce community flocks to the event, which is happening as we speak (or write) in San Francisco. Customers, partners, key stakeholders, and employees share their insights, experiences and vision during this three-day event. Learning, inspiration, and fun are the main ingredients. Sprinkled with 2.700 sessions by thought leaders and other experts. Together with my colleague Floor Knoups, I flew in to experience it myself this year. And let me tell you, Dreamforce 2019 really IS dream. Here are our impressions from the second day. Let’s explore ethics, sustainability and equality in business!
Leading in ‘the new era’
The new era, sounds exciting right? In the first session on Wednesday, we heard from CEOs and government leaders who are embracing new realities, creating new workforce development pathways and championing a future filled with opportunity for everyone. One of the speakers was Barbara Humpton, president and CEO at Siemens. She stated that curiosity and initiative are her two keywords.
There’s a lot to be curious about, looking at this new era. In the future, people might grow to be 150 years old. What does this mean for our careers? What will be the retiring age for people in the future?
Another interesting discussion point is the opportunity gap. Who has access to education? Who gets the ability to learn new skills? And how can we close the gap? This is also something to think about! Some ideas that were mentioned in this session:
- There should be more path ways to success, to gain knowledge and get education.
- Not all talented people have the ability to go to school. How can we spot talent outside of our educational systems?
- We have to break down the borders on how we think about traditional education. There are more platforms for learning.
Keith Block, Co-CEO at Salesforce, opens the topic of transformation. He talks about three kinds of transformations that need to happen. A technology transformation, a business transformation and also a cultural transformation. This last one needs some more info
Keith Block states that Cultural Transformation needs to be the main topic on the board table. Questions that should be asked are:
- What is the ethical news of tech?
- What does it mean for providing a new way of working?
- The workforce has to change. What can we do to help you transform skills?
Grow Your Business Today & Build Relationships for Tomorrow.
This second session was also very interesting. It was all about new ways to build a relationship with your customer. We got some insight in selling and – more importantly: the future of selling.
Several speakers of Paypal, Salesforce and the Zillow Group talked about new online tools that make it possible to anticipate on the needs of your customers. This ‘relationship intelligence’ is made possible by Sales Cloud. It’s uniting departments and building loyalty. The future salesperson will be able to effortlessly meet rising buyer expecatations.
Sustainable Development Goals
One topic that can’t and won’t be ignored: the state of our planet. In this session it is underlined that the business of businesses is to improve the state of the world. Consumers and employees are becoming more aware of corporate impact and are demanding that businesses are part of the solution, not the problem.
The world has a to-do list and the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) are on it! This is a good thing, it could open up an estimated 12 trillion USD in market opportunities and 380 million job opportunities. Focusing on sustainability is not only doing good, it means doing well by doing good!
So what are the steps to take? First of all: leaders should enable it. This topic should be prioritized at board level. Another thing that is pointed out is that women should be payed equally. Not only in a percentage of business, but globally. Solutions should be benefitial to everyone.
The business of business is to improve the state of the world. As consumers and employees are becoming more aware of corporate impact, they are demanding that businesses step up to solve the world's most pressing challenges. This is no longer simply the right thing to do — this is about doing well by doing good. Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)—the world's to-do list for people and the planet—could open up an estimated $12 trillion USD in market opportunities and create 380 million jobs.
The speakers on these topics were Richard Curtis (film-writer), Gail Gallie (Project Everyone), Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (UN Women) and Robin Wright (Actress/philanthropist).
Curious what we've learned the other two days? Read the blogs here:
Dreamforce day 1: Impressions of the opening day
Dreamforce day 3: the third day... a conversation with Barack Obama