In that way, Salesforce (CRM, -0.41%) is a major outlier. Despite the fact that its products are mundane business productivity tools, Salesforce has nevertheless managed to bake innovation into its very corporate fiber. It’s a company that was innovative in the way it started doing business, in how it sold its products, and in the articulation of its corporate mission.
Indeed, asking cofounder and CEO Marc Benioff, 53, to describe how Salesforce is innovative is a bit like asking Plácido Domingo to hum a few bars of a favorite aria. With little provocation Benioff will rattle off the three ways Salesforce has been a trailblazer since its inception nearly two decades ago. “I think our top three are a technology model which is now known as the cloud, the subscription business model, and our 1-1-1 model,” he says, referring to the company’s philanthropic commitment to give away 1% each of equity, products, and employee hours. Click here for more… (by Adam Lashinsky)