Why Salesforce CEO Uses Zen Principle of Shoshin for Enterprise Application Integration Success

Sean Michael

Updated · May 31, 2018

Salesforce.com completed its acquisition of integration vendor Mulesoft in May 2018 and is now positioning for future growth. According to CEO Marc Benioff, he is taking an open approach, guided by a Zen Buddhist principle of Shoshin (初心) to keep the cloud giant moving forward.

Benioff's comments came during his company's first quarter fiscal 2019 financial earning call on May 29. For the quarter, Salesforce reported revenue of $3.01 billion for a 25 percent year-over-year gain.

“As I've pointed out before, CRM is the fastest-growing enterprise software category,” Benioff said. “It's a massive $120 billion market opportunity, and we are determined to continue leading the way for our customers and for their success.”


Salesforce announced its intention to acquire MuleSoft on March 28 in a deal valued at approximately $6.5 billion. Benioff noted that Salesforce closed the acquisition of MuleSoft during May, giving his company the industry’s leading integration platform.

“So many of the CEOs I spoke with told me that data remains locked in their legacy systems and is holding them back,” Benioff said. “With MuleSoft, we’re now enabling our customers to connect all of their data across any public or private cloud, and on-premises, to radically enhance innovation and create incredible customer experiences.”


Mulesoft is largely an on-premises technology, but that's not likely going to create a shift for the larger Salesforce business away from the cloud.

“From Salesforce’s core platform, we're still 100 percent public cloud,” Benioff said. “I don't see that changing.”

He added that there will be instances here and there where on-premises technology is needed. Overall Benioff said his direction is one of customer focus and to always do what's best for customers.

“We begin and end our day at Salesforce with a beginner's mind, and what the Japanese call shoshin,” Benioff said. “The idea, that we’re not attached to any kind of religious dogma around the cloud. We’re going to do what’s best for our customers and what’s best for our company.”

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at EnterpriseAppsToday and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

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    Sean Michael

    Sean Michael is a writer who focuses on innovation and how science and technology intersect with industry, technology Wordpress, VMware Salesforce, And Application tech. TechCrunch Europas shortlisted her for the best tech journalist award. She enjoys finding stories that open people's eyes. She graduated from the University of California.

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