Over the past two months, our team has been forming into what is now considered the Fool’s coaching team. Our CEO, Tom Gardner, has often mentioned that star employees should be like Olympic athletes: having access to coaching and guidance to be at the top of their game. You know we already really do have a trainer on staff, but what about another hugely important element of becoming the best? You have to know the score.
That’s where Fool Feedback comes in. Most companies do some version of an annual performance review. You know, the ones where your manager sits you down once a year and rates you on a numeric scale? Sometimes people are force ranked, some managers are high graders, and some are low graders. We’ve tried that, and it seemed helpful to nobody. It was time consuming and stressful.
Our tech team then took it upon themselves to try 360 Feedback, where each individual could review anyone else at the company anonymously. Then it was summarized and delivered by their managers. But even then, anonymous comments without context seemed to get their messages mixed.
This time, we’re trying something different.
This time, every Fool is participating, and everyone is encouraged to leave their names. And, this time, the feedback gets delivered right to you by a member of the people team, so it’s up to you to figure out how to improve and then ask your manager for help. Get some tough feedback? We figure if you work here, you’re a high performer, and you should be the first to be able to figure out how how to improve yourself, rather than having a manager prescribe it. When you get your feedback, we would encourage you to think about it, then approach your manager, mentor, or Fool Coach with it and some of your own ideas on how to do better.
Here’s the other test: you have to pay to play.
In order to receive your feedback, you have to have at least left feedback once on someone else and included your name. We do this so that, now, everyone has a stake. We all want to improve, and we all want to work with great people.
We’ve never done feedback this way before, so it will be interesting to see the results.
What would you do if you could change your company’s performance system?