15Five is a continuous performance management solution that helps employees grow and develop, in just 15 minutes each week . Through a lightweight weekly check-in, 15Five delivers everything a manager needs to impact employee performance, including continuous feedback, objectives (OKR) tracking, recognition, 1-on-1s, and reviews. 15Five is the #1 performance management software out of 144 vendors on G2Crowd, with over 1,300 forward-thinking companies using the solution to bring out the best in their people.

Website: 15five.com

Their Story

All 35 15Five employees regularly complete a check-in by answering questions related to their work and personal life and have weekly in-person meetings with their managers.

The 15Five check-in is inspired and backed by Kim Cameron and Wayne Boss’s research on the Personal Management Interview. Recurring one-on-one meetings between manager and employee increase employee engagement and performance. The 15Five check is their version of the recurring one-on-one meeting and includes a handful of feedback questions that employees answer weekly. Team members fill out and submit their 15Five check -in before they meet in person with their manager.

The 15Five check-in is characterized by 3 main questions: (1) How are you feeling? (2) What’s going well? (3) What challenges are you facing? These questions are inspired by Harvard professor Teresa Amabile’s research on progress.

15Five managers always ask what’s going well to encourage employees to celebrate and acknowledge positive progress towards goals, a key driver of motivation. They include a question about challenges because it’s important to identify and remove roadblocks that limit progress on meaningful work. Managers can also include questions from 15Five’s Question Bank, which is loaded with dozens of categorized feedback questions. They empower their managers to solicit quality employee feedback and help employees show-up as their best selves.

Their Advice

“It is only through practicing supportive management practices that employees can organically and sustainably do their best work and feel like they are making their greatest contribution. Organizations can replicate our practice by ditching their annual performance review and replacing them with more frequent, ongoing development conversations that are characterized by positive questions that are designed to bring out the best of their people at work.

Companies can shift the context for employees from one where reviews are primarily about being judged and graded to one where it’s primarily about supporting them on their journey of continued growth, development, impact, and success. For managers, it gives them the context that their role as a manager is to help bring out the best in their people, which in turn leads to improved employee performance. The reframe here is that the reflections they’re providing is for that purpose, not just to dole out a grade tied to advancement and increased compensation.

These regular, strengths-based development conversations should be guided by science, specifically positive psychology, and designed to foster the growth mindset. Companies can design internal practices that are guided by research from academics including Jane Dutton, Martin Seligman, Francesca Gino, Adam Grant, Kim Cameron, and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi to name a few. A science-based approach will provide managers with the frameworks and tools to be positive leaders and create both high performing teams that also bring out the best in their people. Organizations that flip the paradigm to be about people over production will achieve extraordinary results.”

Submitted 2018