You’re missing out if you are a leader and never had a 360 Performance Review (360 assessment). My clients have found the 360 assessment to be a very insightful and valuable tool over the last 15 years. It not only allows the leader to increase their self-awareness, it also creates positive culture, inclusion and transparency.
A 360 performance review or assessment is an online survey of questions about your performance as a leader. The survey is sent to 10-15 people you’ve selected from your direct reports, your colleagues and other leaders. The survey offers your participants confidentiality and the results are compiled and only shared with you, unless you choose otherwise.
It’s difficult to know when you’re making a difference and being most effective as a leader. You can look at results and the bottom line for evidence, but is that enough? Have you developed the skills of your followers and expanded the ability of the organization to reach a shared vision? Additionally, have you ensured that the organization can be successful after you’re gone? These are the responsibilities of a leader as well.
One way to uncover these seemingly invisible achievements is to do something really brave, incredible, and powerful.
Work with a coach to ask your staff for a confidential performance review of your leadership.
A 360 assessment is a tool used by many coaches to provide feedback to leaders and set goals for behavior change. Some assessments are standardized and automated, but Core Impact Coaching prides itself in customizing each 360 to each individual leader. This way, we ensure the questions are extremely relevant. We also want to use the language of the organization, and focus on areas of most importance.
The following is a list of common questions from clients.
How do I know, what I don’t know?
That’s exactly the point. How can you improve if you don’t know what needs to be improved? By asking your direct reports, your colleagues, and even YOUR leaders, you ensure that you receive the right information. The assessment is customized and completely confidential so you hear what’s really on their minds. Moreover, Core Impact Coaching follows up with one on one interviews to understand fully the context of the input received.
How will I know how I am perceived by my staff?
What better way to find out than to ask them? Perceptions are reality in the workplace. It’s much better to know any negative perceptions so they can be addressed, rather than putting your head in the sand.
What will I learn about myself?
You’re likely to learn a lot about yourself through coaching and the 360 performance review or assessment. We may explore questions like: What are you really afraid that they’ll say? If they say that, what will happen? What is that fear about? If all your feedback is very positive, what does that say about you? What does a 360 say about your leadership?
Coaching itself is a very brave thing to do, and participating in a 360 takes it to a whole different level. Admittedly, you are making yourself a little vulnerable. But the payoff can be exponential.
What will I learn from others about myself?
Receiving feedback from others is never easy, yet it’s one of the few ways in which we continue to learn. By giving others the opportunity to give you feedback and share their perceptions confidentially, you are receiving a gift. You’ll learn how you are perceived in numerous situations. The 360 is used to identify behaviors you’d like to change in order to be a better leader. The feedback of others will help you identify the most impactful behavioral changes you can make.
What behavior goals will I set for myself?
You’ll be able to identify and focus on a few leadership behaviors that you’ll like to enhance through the evaluation and interviews included in the 360 performance review,. You’ll set those goals with your coach and use your coaching sessions to determine explicit actions to take in order to move forward. These goals will be specific to you and you alone. In addition, the 360 results are never shared with anyone but you. It’s up to you if you’d like to share the results or the goals that you’ve set.
Why would I want to make myself vulnerable to criticism?
According to Dr. Brené Brown, the leading expert on vulnerability, it’s critical.
“In our culture,” teaches Dr. Brené Brown, “we associate vulnerability with emotions we want to avoid such as fear, shame, and uncertainty. Yet we too often lose sight of the fact that vulnerability is also the birthplace of joy, belonging, creativity, authenticity, and love.” On The Power of Vulnerability, Dr. Brown offers an invitation and a promise―that when we dare to drop the armor that protects us from feeling vulnerable, we open ourselves to the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives. Here she dispels the cultural myth that vulnerability is weakness and reveals that it is, in truth, our most accurate measure of courage.”
Won’t my staff interpret a 360 Performance Review as weak and question my leadership?
You’re leading the wrong people or you are in the wrong culture if your staff makes that interpretation. Of course, this could be seen as a weak activity if you are working in an organization that doesn’t value growth, learning, feedback, transparency and active listening. Then you have a different question to ask yourself. Is staying in that culture ok with you?
Won’t this kind of activity damage our culture?
I would ask: how do you see it damaging your culture? If you want to change your organization’s culture to one of growth, learning, openness, feedback, transparency and active listening, then this is a meaningful step to take. You might instead ask yourself “what culture do I want to reinforce, and what culture do I want to change?” Explore how a 360 assessment might fit into your plan.
360 Assessment Series
I’m beginning a series of blogs dedicated to the 360 assessment and its’ benefits. The next blog will cover the definition of a 360 and additional reasons why you might want one for yourself.