Fred Wilson is an iconic venture capitalist at New York City-based Union Square Ventures (https://www.usv.com/about/fred-wilson). Union Square’s investments include Coinbase, Etsy, Flurry, Indeed, LendingClub, MongoDB, Tacoda, Tumblr, Twilio, Twitter, Zynga, and the list goes on.
In a recent post Fred exhorts companies “to have performance oriented cultures where there are frequent checkins between managers and team members, with feedback going both ways, and where non-performance results in changes. These changes could be restructuring of teams, changes in management, or departures of employees. Companies that do not actively manage performance are likely to have lower morale and toxic issues like resting and vesting” (1). Though Fred’s post was responding to a question about “golden handcuffs”, his response addresses the more significant topic of culture and accountability.
FrameWork is a simple-to-use tool that algorithmically determines the most valuable work performed by your team members. For instance, FrameWork identifies tasks that may have been relevant when your product was first released but are irrelevant now. FrameWork’s elegant mathematics are industry agnostic and work as well for the CEO and line worker of a Fortune 200 semiconductor manufacturer as the CEO and line worker of an SMB plating company.
As your team updates FrameWork, the tool continually identifies the work of greatest value encouraging the next cycle of innovative initiatives with a concomitant increase of discussions between manager and the team. Inherently, engagement increases within the team and throughout the layers of the enterprise. The value of FrameWork is observed in this virtuous cycle of employee engagement, productivity, and personal achievement.
High performance/high valuation Silicon Valley companies such as Google and Pinterest have internally and independently developed dashboards similar to FrameWork. FrameWork is the commercially-available tool that facilitates performance oriented cultures.
The Harvard Business Review published, “What to Do if Your Team is Too Busy to Take On New Work” (1), an article written by Pinterest’s Global Head of Customer Operations, Dutta Satadip. Dutta laments the annual business planning cycle where every manager pleads for additional resources without analytical justification. Dutta proposes a data-driven three-step process where each person describes their key activities, the amount of weekly time allocated to these activities, and other activities that are outside the sphere of core job functions. The resulting activity allocation map presents opportunities for management to reduce/eliminate less productive workload through things such as strategic planning as well as other management resources, thus increasing productivity. A business with increased productivity and positive output will have a better chance at thriving within their sector and going on to have many years building and adapting their company as time changes.
Dutta’s article describes how his teams discovered legacy processes that were now redundant and customer-protocols that required significant employee interaction when easily implemented automation tools would have reduced if not eliminated employee contact. This exercise allowed Dutta’s team to do more with less and achieve the scale necessary to meet customer needs and investor expectations.
What Dutta internally did at Pinterest and Google emulates one of the tools in CollabWork’s FrameWork Application. FrameWork’s patented algorithms objectively rank an employee’s tasks by value while Dutta’s managers utilized both objective and subjective assessments. FrameWork’s determination of the most valuable work gives employees a head-start in meeting their goals and increases their engagement, satisfaction, and professional growth.
Patty McCord (https://www.linkedin.com/in/pattymccord/) is a Silicon Valley human resources veteran who worked for iconic Valley startups such as Seagate, Sun Microsystems, Borland, Pure Atria and, most famously, Netflix. Joining Netflix within a year of its founding, Patty assisted CEO and Co-founder Reed Hastings to create a culture of accountability, performance, and success that is documented in Patty’s HR “tome”, Powerful (1). In Chapter 8, Patty eviscerates the annual review as too rigid, time-consuming, costly, and tardy. It demoralizes and penalizes workers for issues that happened months before the annual review, issues that should have been remediated at the time of occurrence. As a consultant after departing Netflix in 2012, Patty’s favorite question about the annual review process is, “Do you have any proof of the value of the review process to your business?” She concludes her musing noting that vanguard companies have “accelerated” the annual review process with GE at the margin, essentially providing real-time feedback to its employees.
FrameWork is the platform of continuous worker/manager input and worker/manager feedback. Think of Framework as a continuous feedback loop. When your subordinates or you and your manager jointly make changes to any process or protocol (engineering, finance, IT, marketing, product management, project management, sales, support, etc), Framework algorithmically measures the value of this new work to ensure it’s higher than your previous process. Timely discussions about outcomes are referenced to the actual work performed and the use of your talent or the talent of each member of your team. The incremental time burden on each worker and manager to input their feedback into Framework is measured in minutes on a desktop or mobile app. FrameWork’s elegant design allows you to control the frequency of the feedback loop. Reviews can be scheduled or initiated by either the employee or the manager any time there is a need to communicate: daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly. Your choice.
FrameWork is objective, eliminating memory biases that inherently distort an annual review such as confirmation bias, recency bias, illusory correlation, leveling/sharpening, and mood congruent memory bias. FrameWork avoids loss of productivity due to annual review anxiety imposed on the preparer and recipient. FrameWork’s design increases productivity and engagement for employees and profit margin for the enterprise.