Performance Everyday: How 3Mers build more open and vulnerable supervisor-employee relationships
Aug 10, 2020

These days, with so many extra worries on our plates, it can be difficult to work through them without support. Fortunately, 3Mers are encouraged to be vulnerable with their supervisors when they need extra assistance, whether it’s personal or professional. Thanks to Performance Everyday, 3M’s new approach to performance, 3Mers around the globe can improve their relationships with their supervisor while aligning on work goals.

In February 2020, 3M introduced a more employee-centered approach to performance management — one that would help 3Mers feel supported, personally and professionally. Through extensive crowdsourcing, focus groups, internal reviews and benchmarking, 3M developed a program that was made with employees in mind, every step of the way. Performance Everyday is an improved process that creates opportunities to connect with supervisors and direct reports on a consistent basis and develop relationships in which both parties can be honest, vulnerable and empathetic.

Fostering close relationships

Across the world, 3M teams that use Performance Everyday on a regular basis have seen their employee-supervisor relationships grow. Since implementing Performance Everyday, Ilona Sroka, Latin America (LATAM) manufacturing and supply chain director, has grown closer to new members of her team. “Performance Everyday sparked more personally focused insights,” Ilona said. “It wasn’t about us as a team, it was about us connecting as individuals, enabling dedicated time to focus on personal growth.”

 Performance Everyday helped Ilona engage with team member Jessika Cabaniel, who after 14 years on the business side of 3M shifted roles to LATAM Lean Six Sigma leader. “With Jessika, we have created the habit to give feedback to each other on our behavior changes and encouraged each other for ad hoc discussions and follow up,” said Ilona. The consistent feedback loop helped Jessika adjust to her new role in Manufacturing and Supply Chain and provided opportunities to be honest with Ilona about what she needed. “Performance Everyday doesn’t make me feel like I’m going to a formal review with my supervisor,” Jessika said. “I’m in contact with Ilona almost every day, but during our 1:1 meeting I have specific space to get her full attention without distraction, so we have time to align our priorities and learn from each other’s experiences. That’s been priceless.”

Archi Fernandes is a South East Asia 3M ethics and compliance leader based in the Philippines. He’s been in the role for about two months, now reporting to Kevin McGuigan, managing director, South East Asia region and country leader, Singapore. Performance Everyday gave Archi the opportunity to develop a communicative and honest relationship with Kevin right away: “I got to know Kevin well, and he got to know me well. The conversations we have are open and transparent,” Archi said. “Supervisor relationships matter a lot, and Performance Everyday makes it easier to support each other. Since we meet at least once a month, my relationship with Kevin has become stronger because he has more confidence and trust in what I do.”

Performance Everyday has given Kevin the opportunity to recognize Archi’s strengths and show him appreciation. “[Archi] is your ideal student in a situation like this, because he is extremely diligent, progressive and thoughtful,” Kevin said. “He’s open to feedback, and very proactive by nature. Performance Everyday made it even easier to get him started, and he was able to hit the ground running.”

Advancing together

When supervisors and their employees only connect a few times a year, it can be difficult to get on the same page with day-to-day objectives and improvement. With Performance Everyday, 1:1 meetings between supervisors and members of their team happen at least once a month.

Kevin’s direct reports not only have opened up since implementing Performance Everyday, but they’ve also become more engaged and productive. “Frequent 1:1 sessions make it so much easier to be diligent and engaged as a team, and as individuals,” he said. “At 3M, we’re very task-oriented. Performance Everyday helps us be more productive and having continuous conversations with your team helps you avoid the year-end grind. It’s a wonderful way for us to set expectations and be more successful in the future.”

These consistent 1:1s with Kevin have helped Archi get settled into his new position and set clear, attainable goals that he creates with Kevin’s input. “Performance Everyday has given me the opportunity to obtain feedback and figure out what is and isn’t working,” Archi said. “You can actually take timely corrective action. When you’re in that continuous feedback loop, everything can be sorted out within the month or the next month. There’s no fear of the unknown or surprises when you’re evaluated at the end of the year.”

Jessika has found that Performance Everyday helps her connect on a personal level with Ilona while thinking about where her career is headed. “You can take control of your career when you can speak frequently with your supervisor. Conversations become honest and close, and you can expose your challenges and barriers,” she said. “Ilona prepares talking points in advance, and I appreciate the fact that she has a development plan in mind for me and my career.”

“Performance Everyday isn’t just another performance management system. It lets you ask powerful questions that are designed to help everyone improve.” – Ilona Sroka

Learning to listen

Performance Everyday’s focus on interpersonal connection helps leaders at 3M truly listen to their direct reports’ needs, respond with compassion and find solutions together.

When Ilona first implemented Performance Everyday, she used it to open conversations, ask genuine questions and focus on people. This helped her team become more open and honest with her and each other, enforcing better life habits. “We’re continuously building our team through questions and discussions. It is important to ‘go slow to be fast.’ Spend more time effectively now to create better impact for the future,” said Ilona. “We take time to follow up on behavior changes and roadblocks, but the biggest question is always, ‘How are you doing? What’s happening for you?’ It started to open more personal and focused insights.”

Kevin’s monthly 1:1 meetings with his direct reports have allowed him to hear more about his team’s successes and encourage them further by responding with enthusiastic questions. “With consistent 1:1s, it’s become so much easier to appreciate your direct reports’ work,” he said. “3M created this companywide tool because our employees asked for it via crowdsourcing, roundtables, etc. We’re able to investigate what we can do for them to make them more productive and effective — and ask what they want to see from us,” he said. “Performance Everyday makes for richer conversations with individuals about feedback from others. I think that’s what drives the greatest change.”

Many organizations are passing their mid-year point so it is a great time to check in with your supervisor or direct reports. Using a people-focused methodology like Performance Everyday could help you learn more about what you need to do to advance at work, but most importantly, foster open and vulnerable connections during an uncertain time.

3M employees are encouraged to be open and honest with their supervisors so everyone can succeed with support. Want to become a part of our team? Learn more at

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