“Effective teamwork begins and ends with communication.”
– Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Kryzyzewski (aka “Coach K”)
In their October 2016 article in Harvard Business Review titled “The Performance Management Revolution”, authors Peter Capelli and Anna Tavis laid out many reasons why up to 70% of multinational companies were moving away from an annual employee review process, and toward more frequent feedback cycles.
While we agree with their underlying rationale, Origin Ventures also believes that more frequent employee feedback is essential for a workforce staffed with millennials that are accustomed to delivering and using fast feedback in their everyday life: a ‘thumbs up” on a social media post, a “heart” on a favorite photograph, and a positive Yelp review for a great dining experience. Why should the workplace be any different?
Origin Ventures recently led the Series A financing for 15Five, a San Francisco-based company that has created software to enable a continuous feedback cycle between managers and team members. Employees spend 15 minutes a week answering performance and culture-oriented questions, then turn it over to managers for a 5 minute review. The result is a dynamic feedback cycle that improves employee satisfaction, morale, and retention.
In addition to weekly check-ins, 15Five’s platform includes several other performance improvement features:
- A Best Self Review brings self-actualization into career progress
- Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) keep teams engaged and aligned
- High Fives make it easy to share recognition and celebrate wins
15Five has over 1,500 customers, including Citrix, Capital One, LinkedIn, Tesla, Southwest, Google, and Amazon. The company holds the #1 rating on software review site G2Crowd in the Employee Engagement and Performance Management category.
15Five represents another investment in our “Workplace and Workforce of the Future” thesis, which is centered around early-stage companies using technology to align workplace expectations with the norms of the millennial generation. Other investments include Teem, which was recently acquired by WeWork, and Fountain.
15Five co-founder and CEO David Hassell says “today’s workforce demands continuous feedback. Companies that aren’t using solutions like 15Five to provide constant feedback are going to see an approximate 400 percent reduction in employee motivation and nearly a 200 percent reduction in employee productivity. This is why it’s never been more important for companies to invest in continuous performance management.”