People Innovation Excellence

Time Management with 5-15 Report Strategy

In the 1980s, Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, invented the 5-15 reports. The concept is so simple, that the report should take no more than 5 minutes to read and no more than 15 minutes to write. Chouinard required most employees to spend around 15 minutes a week writing reports for their managers about their work, ideas, challenges, and impressions of how things were going generally in their company. The managers would spend five minutes reading each report; then curate and compile the highlights and shoot them up the chain to executives; who would read, respond, and curate in turn. The CEO would ultimately receive a distilled but thorough chronicle of life in the company. These weekly reports allow team members to communicate successes without feeling awkward, capture important lessons, demonstrate awareness of next steps, and alert you to setbacks without asking for support. Chouinard credited this tool for keeping him on top of things during his frequent climbing and surfing jaunt.

Five-Fifteens serve two purposes: They keep information flowing, and they get the accolades going. Not only do employees write about their goals, but they also take the opportunity to brag about feats great and small. They think of the Five-Fifteens not as a chore but rather as a chance to be heard and hopefully to steal the spotlight. In these times of extensive travel, an expanding and fluid workforce, and harried schedules, the Five-Fifteen system provides them with the perfect way to keep their finger on the pulse of the business. It acts as a sounding board where we can respond with questions and suggestions. It operates as a fail-safe reminder if we neglect to respond to an employee’s specific to-do-list item. It provides me with a record of employee performance when the annual evaluation sneaks up. And most important, it lets me compliment the little progresses made on a weekly basis, resulting in more employee momentum each following week. Sometimes the Five-Fifteens open up opportunities.

Published at :
Written By
Johanes Ronaldy Polla
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