I generally don't do book reviews as there just isn't enough time in the day but I recently read Behind the Cloud: The Untold Story of How Salesforce.com Went from Idea to Billion-Dollar Company-and Revolutionized an Industry by Marc Benioff and wow - is it good. I posted this review on Amazon a week ago and now that I am finished with the book I want to say the last 1/3 is just as good as the rest! It should be required reading for all entrepreneurs and people who want their companies to grow.
Here is my review:
A Fantastic Book if You Run a Company
I get many books sent to me as I am in the media business. I rarely read any of them. I know the author Marc Benioff and I know what he has accomplished so I thumbed through this book and was blown away at the how Marc and his company helped create a new software category.
I was there when venture capital dried up and overnight declared ASPs dead. I saw firsthand how devastating this was to dozens of companies with similar business models who folded like a bad hand in Vegas.
This book explains how Benioff and company navigated the toughest business environment imaginable and went up against solid competitors and became triumphant. It gives you the ideas, guts and inspiration to improve your company.
I am only 2/3 through the book and so far I have raved about it to colleagues and even sent out a corporate email as a result of a tip I gained from the book.
Granted, many of the ideas in this book may not apply to every business but what you will learn is that if you have the courage and conviction to change the world with your business ideas, you can make it happen. And after reading you will learn from the mistakes [...] competitors made and you will hopefully not repeat them.
What is best about it is the quick read aspect where you can get quick nugget after nugget and all the while you feel like you are ingesting business-building fuel. It is addictive and I can't wait to finish.
I meet with hundreds if not over a thousand tech company CEO's a year and they would virtually all benefit from the ideas in this book.
At TMC it will become required reading and we will become a better company because of it.
That reminds me -- Did you know some of the inspiration for Salesforce.com came from Apple?