In February 2020, we received early indications of Covid-19 from our French customers. Recognizing the potential risks to our team’s safety, we decided to take our work remote, becoming one of the first companies to do so.
"At that time, we were a group of thirty people, hustling away, working towards one, shared passion- to build the world’s first chat survey software"
Working side by side, we were fueled by the remarkable results our early customers were having, some of them even getting as high as 90% completion rates, thanks to the conversational nature of the surveys we had built.
But as a startup which was only two years into the making, we knew the challenges of the pandemic would weigh heavily on us. A lot of questions needed answering-What should we do to preserve our vibrant hustling culture? How were we to maintain seamless communication? How do we sustain the remarkable pace and momentum we had built over the years?
But one thing was clear. I had to keep my team’s best interest in mind and play it by ear. In fact, that became the sole inspiration for creating dedicated channels on Slack such as #daily, where we could check in and check out, and #feedback, where we could gather and share customer feedback. Equally worth mentioning is the #kudos channel, a virtual podium where we could cheer each other on for every win-no matter how small or big. To make it even more special, our admin team placed orders for pizzas, donuts, and other treats each month for our top performers. This simple gesture went a long way in showing our gratitude and creating a rewarding work experience.
Looking back, I can confidently say that these channels became the beating heart of SurveySparrow, breathing life into our daily interactions and contributing immensely to who we are today.
It was around this time that we began noticing multiple requests for a 360 feedback software on the #feedback channel. You see, even though we were helping our customers collect feedback from both employees and customers, it had never been a real 360. It was just 180 masquerading as a full circle :)
We had to roll up our sleeves and do something more.
Thus began our journey to create a solution that would pull together feedback from multiple stakeholders, paint a comprehensive picture, and deliver a true 360-degree view of an employee's performance. And boy, did we deliver!
As a company that prides itself on eating its own dog food, we soon adopted our own solution for our internal performance appraisals. There, we witnessed firsthand the power of our 360 appraisal process. I watched in awe as people began taking every feedback seriously, acknowledging areas for growth, and actively working towards improvement. Quarter after quarter, we witnessed an amazing transformation. Even those who initially stumbled in certain areas rallied with resilience. They honed their skills and became better at what they did.
As the wave of employee experience gained momentum, we found ourselves facing a new demand—the need to distribute that experience at the team level. Gone were the days when employee engagement was solely the domain of a centralized HR team, analyzing and occasionally taking action based on the results. It was time for a change.
You see, the traditional approach had its limitations.
With anonymous engagement surveys, the feedback provided a broad impression across the entire organization. But in reality, those opinions might be specific to certain departments or teams within the company. For instance, the sales department, working across shifts, might be grappling with unique challenges that required immediate attention to boost overall engagement levels.
So, we set out to find a solution—a way to capture a relative engagement score, similar to a heat map, without compromising the anonymity of the survey. This would allow feedback to be acted upon at the department or unit level, rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach across the entire organization. Only then would it create an environment where every employee felt valued, heard, and motivated to thrive.
As we looked deeper into the three key factors, we realized something important: there was a need for a dedicated platform that focused exclusively on employee experience. Trying to incorporate both customer and employee experience into a single platform just didn't make sense.
We wanted to create a solution that would productize our best practices, especially those we developed during the challenging times of the COVID era, and help organizations build thriving work cultures. We wanted to empower everyone to succeed, and that's where the idea for Thrive was born. To put things into perspective, Thrive is built on these three core principles:
To actively seek feedback, gathering insights from every corner, listen intently to what your team has to say.
From a pat on the back to a virtual high-five, the #kudos channel is where you can shine a spotlight on wins, recognize the outstanding contributions of your team members.
3. Performance Improvement Plan with 360 Feedback
For a holistic view of individual growth, and comprehensive evaluations from multiple perspectives.
Today, I’m happy to share all our learnings in building one of the most amazing team, as a product. It encapsulates the very best of what we've discovered and implemented throughout our journey to redefine, refine, and revolutionize employee experience.
Thrive isn't just an addition to our experience management platform; it's a natural extension of our unwavering mission. A mission to equip organizations with the tools and insights they need to empower individuals, nurture their growth, and unlock their fullest potential.
Because when we invest in people, when we champion their success, the results are undeniable.
So join us as we embark on this exciting journey, where every touchpoint becomes an opportunity to create extraordinary experiences. Together, let's build a future where every touchpoint shines and every person thrives.