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Staying true to vision

“Our mission, our vision, is focused on helping our customers achieve their goals."

April 30, 2019

Above: For Evan Goldberg, Oracle NetSuite co-founder and Executive Vice President, doing service to benefit the community is woven into his, and the company's, DNA.

This is the seventh installment in NetHope's Destination Digital podcast.

Whether your organization is a service-oriented nonprofit or a revenue-generating enterprise, staying true to your vision is key to success. This is often easier said than done though, especially with so many changes happening all around us.

In this seventh episode of NetHope’s Destination Digital podcast, we hear from Evan Goldberg, co-founder and executive vice president of Oracle NetSuite. Evan has worked with thousands of nonprofits over the past decade and is a philanthropist in his own right, having started Squash on Track and on the board of the V Foundation for Cancer Research. He also founded the BRCA Foundation supporting breast cancer research. NetSuite is a founding partner of NetHope’s Center for the Digital Nonprofit.

When we sat down with Evan, we started by asking what all organizations want to know, how can they be successful?


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The first thing is the constancy; staying true to your vision,” says Goldberg as he discussed the origins of NetSuite with NetHope CEO Lauren Woodman. “It's not always possible, and you do see organizations that successfully make a huge pivot, but that's the exception rather than the rule. Most really successful organizations have been able to take the original vision they had, stay with it, build on it and keep the core the same.”

For Goldberg, the business success is inextricably intertwined with the success of the customers you serve. Says Goldberg, “For 20 years, we've built a company that delivers a service, and that's very different from delivering a product, which is what the software industry did 20 years ago.”

“Our mission, our vision, is focused on helping our customers achieve their goals. We're really just a technology enabler for that, helping entrepreneurs―both social entrepreneurs and for-profit entrepreneurs―to succeed by delivering a system to run your organization, run your business, one system that handles the back office as well as the front office and commerce.”

NetSuite’s Social Impact Program is grounded in Goldberg’s own experience. While working with his children’s local PTA organization, Goldberg witnessed a morass of unconnected spreadsheets and processes and that sparked his idea of a more cohesive, cloud-based system.

“It was immediately obvious to me that they needed a cloud-based solution so that they could have one source of truth about the organization. They could have people all over using it from home because it was entirely volunteers. From there I just said, ‘Well, wow, there must be a lot of organizations that could benefit from that,’ and that led to the creation of our entire social impact initiative well over a decade ago.”

In its work as a founding partner with The Center for the Digital Nonprofit, NetSuite recognized that it could create humanitarian and conservation solutions for NGOs that would help improve business practices.

“NetHope provides access to world-class tools, resources, and technology for member organizations,” said Goldberg. “As one of the founding partners of The Center, we are excited to support this amazing initiative by helping put the power of cloud technology into the hands of nonprofits around the world. By providing NetHope members with access to our technology, we are helping organizations operate more efficiently so they can focus resources on expanding their missions rather than running their back office.”


Evan Goldberg is Executive Vice President, Oracle NetSuite Global Business Unit. Goldberg is responsible for product strategy and development at Oracle NetSuite Global Business Unit. Prior to Oracle’s acquisition of NetSuite, Goldberg was CTO and Chairman of the NetSuite board. Before co-founding NetSuite in 1998, Goldberg spent eight years at Oracle Corporation, where he served as a vice president. He was involved in a variety of projects, all focused on making powerful database technology more accessible to users. When he left Oracle, he started mBED Software and built groundbreaking website technology.  Goldberg holds a B.A. Summa Cum Laude in Applied Mathematics from Harvard College.

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