The following post was written by Tom Turner at DSi, a Petra Coach client.

At DSi, we are constantly focused on building and maintaining a strong and supportive
company culture. It is one way – and a very important one – that we live our core purpose of
“eDiscovery about people.”

Central to our efforts to build a strong corporate culture are the “Rockefeller Habits” – a
collection of proven organization-building methods used by John D. Rockefeller and outlined
by Verne Harnish in his book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits.

The Rockefeller Habits – or, the Rocks, as we know them – are the foundations of a company’s
priorities, data and rhythm. Here is what that means for us:

Priorities: Each quarter, we have a planning session with our business coach, Andy Bailey
of Petra Coach, who has been integral in our successful implementation of Rocks. At these
meetings, we set individual and company quarterly priorities –the top three to five things we
should accomplish in the next three months to move our business forward. Company priorities
support the one-year, five-year and 15-year goals we have set, which we revisit annually during
our fourth quarter planning meeting. Most individual priorities are tied to company goals so
that team members can see how they help our company succeed as they further their own
professional development.

Data: Each employee has a one-on-one meeting with his or her supervisor every two weeks.
During these meetings, employees discuss personal highs and lows, professional highs and
lows, metrics about their progress towards goals and customer or co-worker feedback. The
meeting ends with the employee setting the top tasks to be completed before the next
meeting. These meetings help break down large quarterly or annual goals into smaller,
measurable projects, making them seem more attainable. They also guarantee robust twoway
communication between management and staff to ensure that each person’s voice is
heard and helping our company run smoothly.

Rhythm: We hold a “huddle” – a short standing-only meeting – four times a week. Our
Monday all-hands-on-deck (AHOD) huddle includes all of our employees. Tuesday through
Thursday, each department has rhythm huddles with their team. These efficient meetings
quickly cover things we should be aware of, if someone needs help, where each person
stands on their priorities and tasks, and what their schedules are like that day.
This Rocks system may sound simple, maybe even simplistic, but the results have been
significant. For example, the biweekly one-on-one meetings have helped improve employee
performance, provided one-on-one accountability and enhanced company culture.
Employees have a safe space to discuss anything they wish with their superiors, such as
an issue with a co-worker or client, something in their personal life that is distracting them
at work or the solid work they have completed for clients. These meetings also give team
members a chance really get to know their supervisor on a personal level, which fosters deep
bonds of trust throughout the company.

We track our Rocks system through an online platform called Align. As an eDiscovery
company, we love technology, and this system allows us to easily monitor how we’re doing.
Each day’s huddle information is input so it’s accessible as needed throughout DSi. We are
able to see all company and individual priorities and statuses. It includes our core purpose,
core values, growth goals and more.

Recently, we had a quarterly theme around using Align and attending huddle. Employees
gained points for logging top priorities, checking off completed tasks in Align and making
progress toward meeting goals. Every Friday, the team with the highest number of points
sprayed silly string on the team with the lowest rankings. This was a fun way to encourage
everyone to make Rocks and Align part of their everyday mentality and to reward those doing
a good job.

Ultimately, this system is about making our company the best it can possibly be – a place
where our employees feel valued, our business stays innovative and our clients receive the
best service possible.

This story was originally published on