What do Flickr co-founder Stewart Butterfield and Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz have in common?
Both are using their personal experience as managers to rethink employee interactions at companies small and large—Butterfield with messaging startup Slack, and Moskovitz with project management software specialist Asana. Now, the co-founder of Bigcommerce, a fast-growing e-commerce software company that hails from Australia, is joining their ranks.
Mitch Harper’s new venture, PeopleSpark, is narrowly focused on answering the perennial question: what motivates employees to do their best job? The software helps managers gauge process on accomplishments or team sentiment through quick weekly check-ins—significantly shortening the quarterly feedback loops accommodated by other employee engagement tools.
“At my last company, we sent out quarterly ‘mojo’ surveys to know how everyone was feeling and to get their feedback on what was going well and what wasn’t,” Harper said in a statement. “The feedback was great, but we had to hack together lots of different tools, and we only surveyed once a quarter.” Subscriptions for the PeopleSpark software start at $49 for up to 10 people.
At Bigcommerce, Harper used a combination of traditional survey tools and spreadsheets to track how employees felt about their employer. That process was inefficient and frustrating, which sparked his interest in creating a new approach. “We think most founders and CEOs set out to build great cultures with talented people doing amazing things,” PeopleSpark declares on its Web site. “But somewhere along the way, they veer off track.” And that, in turn, can sap productivity.