#dreamjob: Salesforce Foundation

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It's no secret - employees think Salesforce.com is one of the Best Places to Work  because of the global 1/1/1 integrated philanthropy model. From volunteering with wildlife reserves in Cambodia to running triathalons to support Leukemia and Lymphoma research, Salesforce.com supports employees to pursue their philanthropic passions. 

Meet Julie Trell, VP of the Salesforce Foundation, and Cristina Lam, Order Management Specialist & alumnus of the BizAcademy, to learn about the vision of the Salesforce Foundation!


What is the 1/1/1 model?

The 1/1/1 model was developed in the initial stages of the Foundation in 2000 by Marc Benioff. He knew that in order for corporate philanthropy to be successful, it needs to be a part of the culture from the beginning. 1/1/1 refers to Time, Product, and Equity. Employees can take six paid days to volunteer around the world with their favorite charity. Salesforce.com’s products are donated or discounted to nonprofits and higher educational institutions. The Foundation was also granted 1% of the pre-IPO stock, which has funded the Foundation for the first decade. 

This decade, we embarked on a new phase to become financially sustainable by selling discounted licenses to nonprofit and higher educational institutions. The Salesforce.com product enables operational efficiency for these organizations to achieve their missions, and create positive social change. The revenue to the Foundation allows us to provide more grants to the communities where we live and work, expand the employee volunteer, and support our Foundation customers.

How & where do you see the philanthropic culture in action? 

The philanthropic culture at Salesforce.com is pervasive and genuine. I hear it from the new employees on their first day during orientation where they spend a half-day volunteering. I hear it from our nonprofit customers who love the product and how it's positively changed the way they operate. I hear it from the employees who have been here for years who take advantage of six paid days of volunteering for causes they believe in.  I hear it from the organizations where our employees volunteer noting, "there's something different about the Salesforce employees who volunteer here. Don't tell the other companies, but they are always our favorite".

How does the Foundation affect your work experience?

It IS my work experience - as VP of all things Fun, Meaningful & Rewarding, not only do I get to work with the inspiring and energetic employees, but I get to develop experiences and fuel their passion for causes they believe in. Part of our grant program is employee-inspired providing financial support and volunteer time for projects they champion. By allowing employees to have input in the direction of the foundation grants, they feel more a part of a company committed to making positive impact in the community. They are happy to be at a company that allows them to bring their whole self to work. 

Has Salesforce.com's program encouraged you to volunteer outside of work?

Yes, as a former classroom teacher and passion for global education, I've been involved with a campaign called 10x10, Educate Girls, Change the World - a feature film and a social action campaign, that will deliver a single message: educating girls in developing nations will change the world.  I helped them to become successful using the Salesforce.com platform and Chatter, while engaging other employees who provided pro bono work to help them with implementation and training.

What is the BizAcademy?

I developed BizAcademy in 2005 to provide hands-on entrepreneurial experience for high school students in the underserved communities near our offices. Students spend their spring break in an apprentice-like competition building business plans, pitching to VCs (played by our VPs at Salesforce), and selling their service to employees.  It's amazing to watch them grow! Alumni of the program are offered the opportunity to apply for internships, scholarships, and a mentorship in the company. What's been incredibly exciting is that at least a dozen students who have gone through the program are now full-time employees with Salesforce.com!

Do you want to work with a company that encourages professional AND personal growth? Your #dreamjob is waiting. 

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