"My main focus is to connect all the people inside the company."

—Martin Lorentzon
Founder and Chairman

Social sharing tops Spotify's playlist

From the mixed tapes of decades past to social media posts about what we're listening to right now, sharing favorite songs and artists has always been important to music lovers. That universal desire to share is fueling the success of music service Spotify.

Spotify is passionate about making all the world's music easy to access—and even easier to share. The service is integrated with Facebook, so users can easily share what they're listening to with friends. The company's social approach isn't just for customers; that philosophy is also core to how Spotify runs its business. "Just as social is critical to our product, it's natural that as a business, we are inherently social," says Jonathan Forster, VP of Sales, EMEA.

Spotify's entire business runs on social. The company uses Salesforce for everything from collaboration to tracking progress against quarterly targets to recognizing group and individual achievements. "You can create the right culture and atmosphere when people get peer-to-peer recognition. We're human beings; we need that encouragement," explains Martin Lorentzon, Founder and Chairman. "It used to be a lot easier to high-five each other. Now we're in different parts of the world, so we need technology to help."

Spotify has created a culture of constant feedback and listening that makes the traditional performance review seem as practical as an eight-track tape. "I'm surprised that companies still have processes where you give feedback to your staff only once per year," says VP of HR Stefan Enholm. "We move so rapidly, it's impossible to wait 12 months to get feedback on how you're doing."

A new way to share music… and a new way to work

The company has experienced meteoric growth, with a growing catalog of millions of tracks and 10+ million active users in 15 countries. With growth comes complexity, and centralized social technologies help preserve the social work environment that got Spotify to where it is today.

"As we've become spread out geographically, being social helps us work as if we're all still sitting in the same office," says Forster. "For us, social means human contact. It means praising colleagues for great work and sharing problems and opportunities."

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