Paulo Coelho once said “The reward of our work is not what we get, but who we become.” I believe this insight applies to both individuals and organizations.
How we approach creating value in the world through building our organizations and offering exceptional products and services has a lot to do with who we become both individually and collectively.
That belief is essentially why 15Five launched seven years ago. Our mission was to create a world where we all work in organizations that are fully actualized, organizations that create extraordinary value for every employee and customer, and where we get to work alongside a vibrant group of colleagues who are committed to creating and living a great life.
Over the years we have refined our mission as simply this: Creating the space where people become their greatest selves. Today, we’re one step closer to achieving that mission.
We’ve come a long way from the first iteration of 15Five, then a simple weekly check-in. Our initial product focused on creating a lightweight and regular feedback loop between employees, managers, and executives because we had discovered that most issues that negatively impact performance or culture can be traced back to a failure in communication.
Today, 15Five is a complete continuous performance management platform that includes a more robust weekly check-in, objectives (OKR) tracking, peer recognition, 1-on-1s, and reviews. Our unique reviews feature, which we call the Best-Self Review™, is our response to the outdated and reviled annual performance review. Our software helps over 1,600 companies bring out the best in their people, including those organizations that grace prestigious lists like the Inc. 500 and Great Places to Work.
And today, I am proud to announce another huge milestone. We have closed an $8.2 million Series A round led by Chicago and Salt Lake City-based Origin Ventures, with participation from New Ground Ventures, Chaifetz Group, Jason Calacanis’s LAUNCH Fund, and leading SaaS investor Matrix Partners, who co-led our seed funding along with Point Nine Capital.
We’ll use this latest investment to support our global growth initiatives, including accelerating product innovation and scaling the sales, marketing, and product teams. We will grow our employee headcount significantly in the coming year, expanding from 34 employees at the start of 2018 to more than 100 in 2019.
In addition to using the funds to grow the team, we plan to use the capital to add new integrations to the platform and to add features that enable employees to better track career progression. This will ultimately allow for greater self-discovery to power long-term professional growth.
A tremendous amount of thought goes into which investors to partner with. There has to be alignment on far more than financials. As 15Five is a mission-driven company, I am excited to be partnering with Origin Ventures, a firm that believes in creating the “Workplace and Workforce of the Future“. They support and invest in companies that apply technological and behavioral changes to professional settings.
“Origin Ventures is excited to be investing in 15Five, the market leader in continuous performance feedback. The company’s product aligns perfectly with the expectations of today’s workforce, leading to high employee satisfaction and reduced attrition,” said Brent Hill, Partner at Origin Ventures, who will be joining 15Five’s board of directors. “We couldn’t be more excited about investing in a product that’s helping drive the transformation of the global workforce now and well into the future.” Learn more about why Origin invested in 15Five.
Transforming the workforce depends on more than excellent software. In 2019, I’m specifically excited to be offering trainings in our Best-Self Management methodology, which promises to positively transform the performance management space and organizations that adopt this approach.
Best-Self Management, has led to unbelievable success for every employee here, including bringing us to this exciting moment in our history. By building a culture and instituting practices that supported each person in being and becoming their Best-Self, high performance and uncommon loyalty resulted naturally across the board. I have been cultivating this methodology for well over a decade and I am thrilled to now be sharing it with the world.
You can read more about the funding announcement in the press release.
David Hassell is cofounder and CEO of 15Five, performance management software that includes continuous feedback, OKRs, peer recognition, 1-on-1s, and 360° reviews. David speaks and writes about leadership and was named “The Most Connected Man You Don’t Know in Silicon Valley” by Forbes Magazine. Follow him @dhassell.