Why Some  360's Fail to Deliver

Author: Ron Hiller l  Published Date 2/2014

Blog Category: 360

 

The value of constructive and nurturing feedback is indisputable. Superlative achievement is almost always rooted in caring feedback from parents, teachers, coaches, and yes even bosses and fellow co-workers. Nobody climbs to the top of their game without some help from others and often that help comes in the form of constructive feedback. Unfortunately the higher a person rises in the organization the more insulated they become from receiving candid feedback that could put them in the winner’s circle.

 

Can’t See the Forest for the Trees

The above adage applies to our self perceptions. It suggests that we are often too absorbed with our self-perceptions to recognize our talents and short-comings, and even if we believe that we have a fairly accurate assessment of our strengths and weaknesses chances are that we are well off the mark. Leaders may perceive their behaviors as strengths while associates view them as productivity barriers.  We all need reality checks from time to time to help us recalibrate our internal guidance system.

 

The Value of 360 Feedback

The value of a 360 is to garner anonymous feedback from a circle of people who have a working relationship with you such as direct reports, peers, customers internal or external, and boss/bosses. Their perceptions are for all and intents and purposes their reality construct of you and that at the end of the day is what really matters.

 

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A Hill of Beans

 

Your self-perceptions don’t amount to a hill of beans if they don’t square with those of your associates. It matters not that you believe you are strong, results driven leader if others see you as rude, bad-mannered and selfish. On the flip side co-workers may see you as an extremely talented and gifted under achiever capable of doing so much more if you were empowering, and willing to ask more and listen to others.
 

Feedback can be the key that helps shift us into high gear to make a change for the better. However, copious 360s are conducted across all industries every year; yet many fail to deliver improvements in performance? Why is that?

 

Why Most 360s Fail To Deliver

 

Recipients of feedback must have complete trust in the accuracy and wisdom of the feedback proffered. This truism is fundamental to all feedback and there lies the crux of the problem with most 360 systems. Recipients frequently doubt the accuracy of their feedback and justifiably so. Most 360s use a single generic non customized questionnaire that unleashes an avalanche of questions on the hapless raters that cover a broad array of competencies, skills, aptitudes and talents that no one rater is fully qualified to answer on every front.

Why Should I Listen to You?

 

You wouldn’t take financial advice from your doctor nor would you take medical guidance from your accountant and yet this is precisely how most 360s operate. These generic one size fits all 360s ask the same questions of all raters and these questions span a wide array of topics giving no consideration to the rater’s unique working relationship to the appraisee.

 

Context Targeted 360s

 

Unlike a standard 360 that asks all raters the same questions, a customized Context Targeted 360 is able to elicit more accurate and credible feedback because all of the custom questions are geared toward that rater group’s unique working relationship with the appraisee.

 

Feedback beyond Reproach

 

The feedback from a Context Targeted 360 is beyond reproach; while providing the recipient and the organization’s development team with a highly focused training and development plan. Below are examples of using the context targeted concept for eliciting credible and accurate feedback from various rater groups. Each rater group has a special working relationship with the appraisee and it is their unique knowledge that gives the Context Targeted 360 superior credibility in the 360 world.    

RATER QUESTIONS BASED ON THE UNIQUE WORKING RELATIONSHIP EXAMPLES BELOW

Peer Feedback

 

Peers are best qualified to respond to questions about these appraisee competencies:

 

Teamwork

Interpersonal Relationships

Communication

Influencing/Persuasion Skills

Conflict Handling

Self-Control

Integrity

 

 


Direct Report Feedback

 

Direct Reports are best qualified to respond to questions about these appraisee competencies:

 

Performance Management

Team Building and Motivation

Interpersonal Relationships

Communication

Leadership Skills

Integrity

Conflict Management

Employee Empowerment

Participative Management

Influencing/Persuasion Skills

Employee Development

Coaching/Mentoring

Information Sharing

Creativity / Innovation

 

 

Senior Manager’s Feedback to Mid/Jnr Mgrs

 

Senior Managers are best qualified to respond to questions about these appraisee competencies:


Planning and Organizing

Problem Solving and Decision Making

Financial Management

Team Building and Motivation

Communication (Oral and Written)

Interpersonal Relationships/Skills

Conflict Management

Creativity / Innovation

Initiative / Proactive

Coaching / Mentoring

Results Orientation /Commitment/Motivation

Flexibility / Adaptability

Resilience / Perseverance / Tenacity

Commitment to Continuous Quality Improvement

Personal/ Professional Development

Employee Development

 

 

 

Executive Manager’s Feedback to Senior Managers

 

Executive Managers are best qualified to respond to questions about these appraisee competencies:

 

Strategic Thinking / Visioning

Business Thinking / Acumen

Financial Management

Leadership Skills

Integrity

Decisiveness

Resilience / Perseverance / Tenacity

Communication (Oral and Written)

Interpersonal Relationships / Skills

Influence / Persuasion / Negotiation

Planning and Organizing

Problem Solving and Decision Making

Judgment

Conflict Management

Creativity / Innovation

Managing Change

 

 



Customer Feedback Internal and External

 

Customers are best qualified to respond to questions about these appraisee competencies:

 

Customer Focus

Customer Service

Project Management if relevant

Problem Solving and Decision Making

Interpersonal Relationships

Communication

Integrity

Creativity / Innovation

Persuasion / Negotiation Skills

Functional Expertise

Summary

Feedback is every person's guiding compass that keeps them on course especially during times of change and challenge. Feedback is both valuable and necessary to avoid stagnation and becoming irrelevant in a rapidly changing world. Feedback that is highly targeted and taps the rater’s unique working relationship with the appraisee will always be the most trust worthy, valuable and edifying.

Want to learn more about a Context Targeted 360? Click here

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