Sarah Franklin

Personal Title: Dreamer, Momma, Friend, Partner, Mentor, Athlete, Ally
Work Title: EVP Dev Relations & GM Trailhead
Company: Salesforce
City, State, Country: San Francisco, CA, USA
Trailhead profile URL:
Twitter handle:

How did you get started in Sales or Marketing?
My career has been an incredible journey. I have shifted from an engineer to a developer to a technical marketer to a product owner and general manager. One thing that has stayed consistent is that I have never stopped learning.

Do you use Salesforce in your day to day?
Yes, I use Salesforce every day to collaborate with my team and to check in on our metrics. My team has built amazing dashboards for running our business and we have a vibrant Chatter group.

What is your biggest accomplishment in your career to date?
To date, my biggest career accomplishment has been helping to spark the Trailblazer movement with the launch of Trailhead, Salesforce's free online learning platform that provides equal access to education for all. Trailhead has grown from an innovative idea and prototype to a learning platform that is truly changing lives. We have seen Trailblazers that have gone from being unemployed to thriving in succesful Salesforce careers.

What would most people reading this today be surprised to learn about you?
My background is in Chemical Engineering. I started my career at Lockheed Martin as a chemical engineer working in a wafer fab doing chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) on radiation hardened chips. I always thought my career would be spent in a lab, but I wasn't happy. So I took a major risk and decided to pursue something new, which led me to my current dream job.

When hiring, what skills or attributes do you value most?
Hiring people that are aligned with your values and culture is extremely important. My leadership team is highly collaborative and transparent. We have great relationships built on a foundation of trust. Trust is the most important value and attribute we look for.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?
From one of my mentors at Salesforce on the value of metrics - If you measure something every day and are transparent about your goals, you will be laser-focused on improving and achieving your goal, and you can build a following to help you. I apply this incredible piece of advice in my personal life, with my family and at work. It has truly transformed my way of thinking and my goals.

What do you do to empower other women?
I know the incredible value of having a good mentor and I try to mentor as many women as I can. I aim to teach, challenge, support, and partner with my mentees. I hope that by providing my support, I am empowering them to take risks!

What advice do you have to find an ally?
My advice would be to make sure to find someone who will genuinely advocate for you and give you honest advice.

On risk taking...
I know risk-taking can be scary, but I encourage everyone to think big. Don't limit your goal setting. With the right intention and focus, truly anything is possible. You need be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

On plans...
Make a plan and know where you want to go. I run into so many people who don't have a plan. A successful career can't be built without a plan. If you don't know what you want to do, talk to people, make connections, and try new things.

On leadership & motherhood...
Being a mother is a great way to learn leadership. Mothers teach their children how to thrive in the world and instill a foundation of values and behaviors. Being a leader is very much the same. You must lead by example and be the change you wish to see in this world.

Fun Facts:

  • My favorite music to trailblaze to - Beastie Boys
  • Coffee vs. Tea - Neither - I drink only water and wine
  • My life mantra - Be the change you wish to see in this world
  • Words or phrases I use most - MOAR. It's a fun made-up word we use a lot. It basically means more but said like a roar to make it fun. I also use a fair amount of happy words like awesome and incredible. Bitmoji is my favorite second language too.