All in Engagement

Creating Different Opportunities for People to Mix

When Squarespace first started, we would gather our whole team together at one table in a cafe after work. As we grew we introduced First Tuesdays, our monthly company-wide happy hour. With the company now even larger–we are currently 360 employees and growing–we want to be more creative in the opportunities we provide for people to mix. 

This year, our Experience Team organized the first Squarespace Friends & Family Day.

Common language

Jenny, my recruitment manager, has just sent out a brochure to candidates without my input. The content was good, but the brochure looked crap. This hath made me mad - not so much because of the brochure's quality, but because (if Jenny had come to see me first) we could've produced a better outcome. But she didn't! When I tell her this, Jenny is equally frustrated. I never check the communication we send out to candidates, she replies. Which is, of course, true - yet it felt like common sense (at least to me) to show me the brochure before sending it out.

Familiar story, right? Regardless of what department you're working in, it's hard to determine what your employees do or don’t have the authority to do. But the solution is (or at least sounds) profoundly simple:

How organisation size crushes innovation - and what to do about it!

Remember working for that start-up? Things were good. You responded quickly to change. You could, and often did, roll out new programs within weeks or days. Your boss approved quick changes with a simple nod. And you got results - fast.   

Then you switched your start-up gig for an important role at a big enterprise. Things were different - slower, costlier, stuck in red tape, less tangible, less experimental. That's because big organisations are complex. And when humans get accosted by complexity, we get anxious. We need certainty and coordination - in the form of structures, policies, responsibilities and rules - to push that fear away.

What's the obvious issue with performance reviews staring us right in the face

They are demotivating. They are anxiety provoking. They are disruptive. What is the obvious issue that is stopping performance reviews from achieving what they are supposed to achieve? Let's have a look at the research and the science of motivation and engagement. One thing is clear, it's good to provide people with honest feedback and encourage managers to coach people to achieve (even) higher performance.

3 tips to boost staff recognition programs

Peer recognition is probably the most rewarding and most essential way to reinforce excellence. Often traditional recognition models may have been developed to do so, but they sink in it's own heavy weight.  The practise of allowing people to nominate someone for a quarterly award just didn't catch on. Instead of having a heavyweight program, we introduced a lightweight 'Kudos' model which constantly reinforces great work and awesome behaviours without needing explicit direction or acknowledgement from the top. Something to consider it to simplify the process to boost peer to peer recognition.