Arkadium fuels employee performance with weekly and monthly 1-on-1s.

Arkadium was named “best place to work” by Inc. magazine in June 2016. When the company was a smaller team with only one location, it could easily standardize real-time feedback between managers and employees.

But as the company grew–making interactive, visual content for a client list of over 450 leading digital publishers–more than 70 employees worked outside its New York headquarters.

This presented challenges to maintaining the quality and frequency of feedback. Arkadium emphasized weekly 1-on-1s to standardize its communication process and provide real-time feedback to employees.

In addition to streamlining the feedback and goal-tracking process in a weekly 1-on-1 cycle, in May 2017, Arkadium is rolling out a monthly “check-in” cycle to replace bi-annual performance reviews.

Vivian Lee, VP of People Operations, says the weekly 1-on-1s standardizes communication across different teams and creates a culture of transparency. This means both that managers are receiving consistent updates, and employees know how to report their progress.

Building a transparent culture.

As a company which values positive energy and living a full life, Arkadium supports a culture of transparent core values, goals and feedback.

With multiple teams working together across departments and time zones, Arkadium planned to standardize feedback by focusing on individual employee success. This meant moving away from bi-annual performance reviews and conducting frequent 1-on-1s.

“Everyone can have the best intentions, but without the right standard of communication, they can be interpreted in many different ways. Weekly 1-on-1s have been able to standardize direct feedback for our employees across offices and time-zones.”

Employees wanted to clearly understand and contribute to company goals with the opportunity to meet weekly with their managers. 7Geese was able to help Arkadium cascade its objectives and, using the 1-on-1 feature, the company has been able to create 1-on-1 templates for every level of the organization. It motivated employees when they have input and managers recognize their contributions weekly.

Real-time feedback.

For Arkadium, a transparent feedback culture impacts employee performance. Employees now have frequent opportunities to ask for help and managers can fall back on the pre-existing 1-on-1 templates they created each week—asking, “where do you need my support?”.

“Arkadium values real-time, consistent communication. This means asking questions to simplify the interpretation and help to understand.”

Arkadium’s teams have been able to easily adopt the weekly 1-on-1 process after seeing how much more time this leaves for face-to-face interactions.

“We have a 100% participation rate for weekly 1-on-1s.”

Using the 7Geese 1-on-1 feature removes both the ambiguity of how managers should be checking in with their teams and impediments for employees who need to ask for help. The ability to customize 1-on-1s allows teams to leverage their own dynamics, making 1-on-1s valuable rather than generic.

The feedback is planned, consistent and delivered in real-time. This has allowed Arkadium to grow its feedback culture without disrupting the company’s strategic goals.

1-on-1s strengthen Arkadium employees’ engagement with company values and support their success. Vivian notes that “performance management is about consistent, real-time and direct communication that can be understood by everyone.”