360 Degree Feedback and Evaluation: Definition and Example
360 Degree feedback: This article explains 360 Degree feedback in a practical way.
After reading you will understand the basics of this powerful employee assessment tool. This article also contains a downloadable and editable questionnaire.
This article further contains a general definition of the method, and the necessary steps involved.
- Unlike normal feedback, 360-degree feedback incorporates the views and input of colleagues and other professionals in addition to the managers and supervisors
- This method helps employees understand their strengths and weaknesses from different perspectives
- The advantage of this feedback method is that it exposes many problems that would otherwise go undetected due to the use of many different sources
What is 360 Degree feedback?
360 Degree feedback or 360 evaluation can be used to obtain a complete picture of an employee’s performance. The method is also known as multi rater feedback.
It is a measuring tool in which an individual’s performance is analysed from different angles on the bases of competencies. The founder of this great employee performance analyse tool is Marshall Goldsmith, a leading authority on leadership, business education and coaching.
The individual’s skills, knowledge and behaviour are evaluated as objectively as possible by themselves and by people who maintain contacts with them. The collected feedback provides insight into the employee’s performance.
360-degree feedback tools are used in the performance management strategy of many organizations. It enables managers on all levels to do performance reviews and improve communications towards employees regarding their performance. The outcomes of such a review can also be used as input for performance appraisals.
It is important that this feedback method is obtained from different perspectives. This is why the responses from the feedback providers are categorized into for example colleagues, managers, employees, customers and other external relations.
As a result, insight is obtained from various perspectives into the qualities of an employee. By using an appraisal form with predetermined competencies, representatives from the different categories are asked to assess the employee in question.
As the employee also completes the form, the manager can verify how many areas of overlap and how many discrepancies there are in certain areas. In case of discrepancies, it is advisable to go through these with the employee and make agreements about future performance.
360 Degree feedback as a tool
This feedback method is best used to support assessments. The assessment of people in their immediate environment is just a random indication. This is why the assessments of feedback providers are not necessarily in accordance with the truth.
Furthermore, this measuring tool is an efficient tool for making a personal development plan. It is also used for identifying training needs or supporting career changes.
Critics indicate that this measuring tool takes a lot of time and effort. The vast amount of information that is generated would make it impossible for a manager to process all this within a short time.
The feedback method only works well when it is linked to a common goal. Managers and employees must work well together and formulate SMART Goals: specific, measurable, acceptable, realistic and time-bound.
By collecting honest and unbiased feedback, managers will be able to use the information for development activities. With the help of this information, progress can be measured and adjusted.
360 degree feedback system questionnaire
Start your feedback by downloading this questionnaire and adapt it to your specific environment and needs.
Download the 360 degree feedback questionnaireThis template is exclusively for our paying Toolshero members. Click here to see if a membership is something for you!
It’s Your Turn
What do you think? Is the 360 degree feedback method applicable in today’s modern organizations and businesses? Do you recognize the practical explanation or do you have more suggestions? How do you process negative feedback? What feedback processes are used in your working environment? What are the success factors for a good 360 degree feedback analyze?
Share your experience and knowledge in the comments box below.
- Church, A. H., & Bracken, D. W. (1997). Advancing the State of the Art of 360-Degree Feedback Guest Editors’ Comments on the Research and Practice of Multirater Assessment Methods. Group & Organization Management, 22(2), 149-161.
- Edwards, M. R., & Ewen, A. J. (1996). 360 Feedback: The powerful new model for Employee Assessment and performance improvement. Amacon.
- Hesselbein, F., Goldsmith, M., Beckhard, R. (1996). The Leader of the Future. Jossey-Bass.
- London, M., & Beatty, R. W. (1993). 360‐degree feedback as a competitive advantage. Human Resource Management, 32(2‐3), 353-372.
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