Bringing people together through shared experiences is a fundamental element of a thriving workplace culture. This is what inspires us as we continue to develop our platform to include meaningful opportunities for interaction and participation. We sat down with our CPO, Gilad Bonjack to get his perspectives on our improved platform and the holistic strategy behind the development of our polling features, which are designed to solicit employee feedback on the virtual experiences of interest.
Let’s breakdown the thought process behind the new platform update before we get into specifics.
Our aim is to help the workplace culture evolve and to provide the right set of experiences for employees. We know that those who are responsible for selecting and coordinating virtual experiences (VX) within a company are focused on the experience itself rather than who is providing it, and bucket the experiences under a goal-based theme such as team building or remote onboarding.
From our perspective, we ask employees ahead of time for input on the experience they want to go through. We’re also there afterwards, asking them for feedback. We ask employees whether an experience met their expectations and if they would participate in an activity again. This feedback helps us to curate the activities offered and make sure that every person that goes through a VX on our platform has the best experience possible.
We want to build real, ongoing relationships between employees and business leaders within an organization, and that is our North Star. I think that’s what really sets us apart. We’re not just offering these opportunities through Virtual Experiences, we actually want to apply what we are learning from employees to ensure we always deliver a well rounded experience. Employees are not passive consumers through VX; they’re actively participating in the creation of their workplace culture.
Which features on our platform were you most excited to develop?
The polling feature is definitely the thing that excites me the most. This is the first time we’re actually giving team members the power to make decisions for themselves. Until now, employees were passive consumers of the virtual experiences we provided. In the past, those managing these programs on behalf of their company were responsible for making the decision about which virtual experiences to select. Employees of course participate and have fun, but that was the extent of their involvement. With this new feature, we give employees the opportunity to voice their ideas during the planning stage.
I’m really excited about this because it reinforces our vision, which is to fuel thriving workplaces through a centralized platform that manages all aspects of a company’s culture program.
I’d like to dig a little deeper into the new polling system. What makes this implementation so unique for improving workplace culture?
The polling feature allows those responsible for running culture programs to directly ask employees what they want. This serves two purposes. First, it alleviates stress on the admin side as there is no longer a need to guess what teams want. Second, the feature allows members to become contributors to corporate culture, enabling them to shape their own culture-building activities.
The inspiration behind this feature came from understanding that culture isn’t just about throwing something at employees and hoping that it sticks. It’s more about listening to what employees have to say, gathering feedback, and applying that gained information to actually implement something a lot stronger, more customized. This is what makes Thriver’s polling system unique.
Can you share a bit about customer user sentiment and how it drives product-focused decisions at Thriver?
Think of something that you want to take part in and would recommend to others because of the joyful experience. This is what we are trying to do now by making sure employees genuinely enjoy the virtual experiences they’re participating in.
We want employees to go to their friends and say, “Thriver is this amazing product that I use at work. It’s awesome and you should check it out.” I believe in the lovability of the product and that it’s something that you feel a connection to because it provides you with something delightful and functional. We are going beyond the functionality and making sure all aspects of the product can be enjoyed, including the path from point A to point B. This emotion ultimately builds on the long-term value for teams and their company culture.
Taking a glance into the future, what does Thriver expect to achieve?
Company culture is not something that flows from top to bottom, it’s something better perceived in circular motion, where all employees of a company have the ability to recommend, participate and develop all aspects of their said culture. We want employees to be active participants or active curators of their culture. What we eventually want to have is employees coming to our platform to create, share, and collaborate, not just to consume virtual experiences determined by those running culture programs.
Eventually we want to have Thriver as the ultimate culture platform for companies who want to improve and grow their workplace culture. This is going to be a journey. Feeling like you’re a part of something big — this vibe, which is hard to capture, is something that we’re now heavily investing in.