On March 6th, more than 12,000 Trailblazers gathered at Sydney’s International Convention Centre (ICC) to kick off the first leg of the Salesforce 2019 World Tour. More than 200 customers and partners shared their stories, insights and expertise; the Campground — Salesforce’s one-stop shop at the heart of the Customer Success Expo — was packed with partners, demos, and even a small course for mini golf. Four floors of the ICC hosted discussions, panels, breakouts, meetings, and workshops.
Here are 10 more highlights from Salesforce Sydney World Tour 2019.
1. We celebrated 20 years of social impact in the keynote
Salesforce President and Chief Product Officer, Bret Taylor, kicked off the keynote with an ode to Salesforce’s 20th birthday.
“We’re celebrating 20 years of Salesforce on 8 March!” Bret told the packed keynote room. “And in 20 years, the thing we’re most proud of isn’t the revenue. It’s the way we’ve built the company. It’s our values.”
“There has never been a more important time to put our values of trust, equality, innovation, and customer success into action,” he said explaining Salesforce’s success is defined by the success of our customers.
Watch the whole keynote on Salesforce Live.
2. A rockstar panel talked trust
Day one closed with a panel of rockstar guests discussing trust including: Aussie journalist Stan Grant, the leader of last year’s Thai cave rescue Rick Stanton, and Seafolly CMO Adriane McDermott moderated by Salesforce’s Regional Vice President for Platform & Emerging Technologies Rob Wickham.
Despite coming from different fields of expertise, one of the main points all of the panelists agreed on was that to build trust, you need to lead with authenticity and purpose.
During the panel Adriane McDermott explained, “The difference between good and great brands comes down to believability and trust. And, I’d say, authenticity — the ability to make decisions based on a set of defined beliefs, and the ability to stick with those beliefs even when the decisions they dictate are hard ones, or potentially not best for the bottom line.”
3. Salesforce Ventures pledged $50 million to Aussie startups
Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, The Honourable Senator Simon Birmingham joined Salesforce to launch the new Salesforce Ventures $50 million Australia Trailblazer Fund, which will support innovation and growth in the Australian startup ecosystem.
He explained how Australian startups will make the most of the opportunity, “We’re able to think outside the square,” he said. “We facilitate the free flow of data and ideas, recognizing that data is in fact the new oil.”
4. Heidi Prowse collected a Golden Hoodie
Awesome Trailblazer Heidi Prowse, collected a Golden Hoodie on the keynote stage!
Heidi, who has just reached Ranger status, is the very epitome of an #AwesomeAdmin – you can read her story to find out why.
5. myTrailhead launched and we got a first-hand look at it in action
Salesforce’s Rob Wickham, took to the Keynote stage to give us all a first-hand look at myTrailhead in action. In his keynote, Bret Taylor announced that 1 in 4 people who go on Trailhead land a higher-paying job with the skills they’ve built – now with myTrailhead, companies have the opportunity to create cultures of continuous learning and development.
During Rob’s keynote we learned how Telstra used myTrailhead to cultivate a culture of learning while gamifying the experience with trails integrated into workflows and tailored to users.
6. Special guests talked all things growth
Red Balloon founder and Shark Tank Australia judge Naomi Simson, New York Times Bestselling Author and co-founder of UP! Your Service Ron Kaufman, entrepreneur and sales expert Cian McLoughlin, and Salesforce’s Global Customer Growth and Innovation Evangelist, Tiffani Bova, shared their advice for building a high-growth organization.
The message was clear: customers are key to the success of any business.
“Your customers are not going to thank you for just giving them what they expect,” explained Kaufman. He continued by saying that businesses need to go beyond delivering upon customer expectations — they need to exceed expectations.
Simpson and McLoughlin added that honest communication with customers is the key to innovation.
7. Celeste Barber dropped in to chat!
Marie Claire Australia Editor, Nicky Briger, hosted a panel discussion bringing the topic of equality and diversity center stage with CEO and President of Cochlear Dig Howitt, Country Road Group and David Jones Chief Customer Officer Hannah Ross, and comedian and actress Celeste Barber.
The publication was in the midst of new research to follow-up on a survey they conducted 10 years ago called “What Women Want.” According to the new research, more women are happier in their careers, but they also want to be paid more – women’s greatest fear is not having enough money now and in retirement – and women are empowered to take action against sexism and sexual harassment in the wake of #MeToo.
Barber, however, questioned how far society has actually progressed saying, “54% of women will now report sexual harassment in the workplace. And we see that as a good thing? That’s only half!”
After the panel, Celeste Barber jumped into our studio – watch the video here.
8. We talked sales trends
In the Sales Keynote, News Corp Chief Information Officer, Dominic Hatfield, spoke about the media giant’s transformation from a product-centric to a customer-centric organization.
“We have transformed our selling process with consistency across the platform, campaign tracking, reporting and analytics,” he said. “We joined up our tech strategy and augmented it with our business strategy so it became one.”
For other companies undergoing the same transformation, he had some advice: get executive endorsement, stop focusing on technology projects and focus on business projects, have a clear plan for adoption, be patient, be prepared to change over time, and get your partner and team mix right.
9. We looked to the future
John Cassidy, Managing Director at Accenture, posed the question: the post-digital era is upon us – are you ready for what’s next?
Here’s what he said is coming and how organizations can be ready:
- New technologies such as artificial intelligence, extended reality, and quantum computing (known as DARQ) will be catalysts for change in a digital world. Understanding how the technology works and how to use it is an essential step in preparation.
- Find unique consumers and unique opportunities including markets that open and close quickly and the ability to produce products suited to those customer needs.
- Human workers will either innovate the workplace or hold it back.
- As consumers become increasingly reliant on connected ecosystems, companies have to assume responsibility by knowing where their security risks are.
According to Cassidy, the pace of change bringing this next wave of technology will be here before we know it.
10. We gave back
60 students from a local high school attended and pitched on their Maker Faire projects tackling the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The solutions included everything from AI-enabled robotic household trash bins to ocean clean-up projects.
To celebrate 20 years of giving back, more than 300 attendees posted a pledge on Salesforce’s giving back wall to make a difference in their own lives, their community, and their world.
See more of the action on Salesforce Live.
Join the community of Trailblazers at an event near you. Register now.