Shai Agassi's Travel Schedule and Thoughts on Hosted Software

Quick comments on this SF Chronicle interview of SAP’s Shai Agassi:

1. He travels 29 weeks a year. How does he have a family? Through his answers his attitude seems to be, "I know I’m not around enough, but they’ll learn the value of hard work through my example." I like this better than people who say, "No, I really am home enough! I go to Johnny’s games!"

I would love to dig in and see how Agassi deals with work-life balance on a day-to-day level…

2. He sees on-demand as "trendy" and the hybrid approach as a nut cracked by SAP. That is, the managed appliance model of customer owning the box but maintained and upgraded by the vendor. I’m more bullish on more pure hosted software: I think we’re just scratching the surface of the internet infrastructure and over the next five years we’ll see the customer be able to customize software extensively even if the base code is shared with lots of people. I also think the reliability issues will resolve themselves as the model becomes the standard; SFDC’s problems of late reminds me of eBay’s IT infrastructure problems when they became huge. If anything, it’s a sign of the critical mass.

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