How Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff Uses Artificial Intelligence to End Internal Politics at Meetings

May 19, 20175min

Salesforce has been our loyal entrant into the UK Customer Experience Awards in last couple years and now their CEO explains how they use AI within their company.

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff isn’t just predicting that artificial intelligence will one day help run everyone’s companies, he’s already using it at Salesforce today.

He’s got a special, not-yet-released version of Einstein, the company’s artificial intelligence tech baked into its products, helping him run his company, he told Wall Street analysts on Thursday during the company’s quarterly conference call.

He invites this version of Einstein, called Einstein Guidance, to his Monday morning staff meeting, where up to 30 top executives update him on their progress for the quarter. Einstein Guidance is designed to do forecasting and modeling.

It’s especially useful to make sure that managers aren’t trying to snow him.

He said (emphasis ours):

“Like in a lot of our technologies, we really become the first and fastest-moving user. We even have a piece of Einstein that we’ve not yet rolled out to our customers called Einstein Guidance.

“This is a capability that I use with my staff meeting, when I do my forecast and I do my analysis of the quarter, which happens every Monday at my staff meeting …

“We have our top 20 or 30 executives around the table. We talk about different regions, different products, different opportunities. And then I ask one other executive their opinion … and that executive is Einstein.

“And I will literally turn to Einstein and say, ‘You’ve heard all of this, what do you think?’ And Einstein will give me the over and under on the quarter and show me where we are strong and where we are weak and sometimes it will point out a specific executive, which it’s done in the last three quarters, and said, this executive is someone who needs specific attention during the quarter …

“I have the ability to talk to Einstein and ask everything from product areas I should be focusing on, geographies I should be focusing on, linearity of bookings during the quarter. Every question I could possibly have, I’m able to ask Einstein.

“And for a CEO, typically the way it works, is you have various people, mostly politicians and bureaucrats at your staff meeting who are telling you what they want to tell you to get you to believe what they want you to believe. Einstein comes with no bias. It’s just based on the data.

“To have Einstein’s guidance has transformed me as a CEO.”

Now, while it sounds like Einstein is listening and processing a verbal discussion, that’s not clear and somewhat unlikely. Einstein is designed to create its models and suggestions off of the data stored in Salesforce apps. However, in March, Salesforce and IBM announced a deal that will integrate Einstein with IBM’s Watson. Watson is a form of AI that geared to work with unstructured information and specifically with language.

One day, most CEOS will likely have a so-called AI “executive” listening on meetings and keeping everyone honest with the data.

“AI is the next platform. All future apps for all companies will be built on AI,” Benioff predicts.

Written by: Julie Bort 

Source: Business Insider


Interesting Links:

CXM Editorial Team

CXM Editorial Team

Published for all CX professionals, the digital Customer Experience Magazine is packed full of industry news, blogs, features, video bites and international stories all focusing on customer experience. CXM will help you learn what makes an outstanding customer experience that wins both awards and the hearts of customers. And sometimes we share some cool music as well.

Inform. Inspire. Include.
A free way to improve your business.

Customer Experience Magazine is the online magazine packed full of industry news, blogs, features, reports, case studies, video bites and international stories all focusing on customer experience.



UK Trademark UK00002648900

EUIPO Trademark 018131832

Contact Information

For article submissions:
Paul Ainsworth

For general inquiries, advertising and partnership information:
Tel: 0207 1932 428

For Masterclass enquiries:
Tel: +44 20 86385584

Customer Experience Magazine Limited
Company number: 12450532
International House, 24 Holborn Viaduct,
United Kingdom, London, England, EC1A 2BN


Find a job in customer support with Jobsora