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Customer Case Study: Sana Performance Feedback Culture



Many early-stage companies do anniversary-based performance reviews or no reviews at all.


When advising Series A-C companies, a top priority of ours is often creating a robust performance feedback culture.


When you’re a small company, leaders generally know what everyone is working on. As your team grows and you add middle management, this is no longer the case. As you approach ~30 employees, it’s time to start considering a more formal performance feedback process that can scale as your company scales.


When I began working with Sana Benefits, they had an anniversary-based annual review cycle, but no consistent framework for conducting feedback conversations, and managers weren’t equipped to have meaningful feedback and coaching conversations.


Together we worked to roll out a year-round program that allowed for better ongoing communication between employees, managers, leadership, and the people team.


Here’s what we did:


✅ Define Sana’s performance management philosophy and goals

​​✅ Align on an annual performance and compensation review calendar with leadership

​​✅ Develop self, peer, and manager questions to gather consistent and actionable feedback

​​✅ Evaluate and implement a performance tool (Sana uses ChartHop)

​​✅ Employee and manager training to prepare for meaningful feedback conversations and effective 1:1s (Sana partnered with Hone for training)

​​✅ Develop employee and manager communications and documentation

​​✅ Reduced and streamlined the workload for all stakeholders involved in the process


Now Sana team members and their managers use regular performance reviews and continuous feedback conversations to re-state, review and realign expectations.


It’s been a pleasure to support Sana’s People team, including Andrew Fitch, Natalia Portillo, and Mikaela Bourret, with these enhancements to their talent review program.


Want to have a step-by-step guide to building a performance feedback culture in your organization? Check out my Remote Performance Management Guide👇

Note: Sana uses ChartHop for goal setting, compensation planning, and engagement surveys too so they get a lot of value out of their people operations platform.




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Interested in building a similar performance culture at your organization? Contact me!


Here are three ways I can help, whenever you’re ready:

  1. Schedule an "Ask Me Anything" micro consulting session to get 1:1 advice

  2. Buy a Remote Work Playbook to leapfrog your progress

  3. Advisor to your leadership and people team to build a strong people operations foundation and best-in-class employee experiences

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