Many companies across the world take advantage of the 360 degree training process. The reason it's so popular is because it's easy to put in place, you can use it for many industries, and it's affordable. It's also incredibly effective for performance management and improvement.
Some benefits may be hard to quantify while others will have a definitive impact on your bottom line. But what exactly is it?
What Is 360 Degree Feedback?
360 degree training is a means of development based on receiving feedback from multiple sources. Since feedback is derived from a variety of perspectives, it’s also called multi-rater feedback or assessment.
The respondents may be a leader’s:
- Manager or supervisor
- Human resources staff
- Clients, customers, suppliers, etc.
To gather feedback, respondents are given an assessment where they share their views of a leader’s behavior or performance.
The leader also completes a self-assessment, which gets compared with the other feedback. This means the leader gets a well-rounded view of their attitudes, behavior and performance.
Components of a 360 Degree Training System
There are three main components of these systems:
- The assessment. This is the survey instrument used. Respondents provide feedback concerning a leader on the assessment.
- The feedback. Direct reports are compiled from the feedback given by the respondents. This should include a session for leaders to review the information with the facilitator, their supervisor and a mentor.
- The training program. A long term program is implemented in order to grow your leaders. This training is to develop the strengths and weaknesses that are revealed via the assessment.
The Benefits Of 360 Degree Feedback
This feedback process is used widely with much success. Here's a look at the main advantages companies across the world have seen from this approach:
1. It Increases Self-Awareness
This approach helps people become more aware. When others provide feedback, a person gets a full view of themselves that’s less prone to being one-sided and biased.
2. It Provides A Full Perspective of Strengths and Weaknesses
A 360 review is a great vehicle for highlighting strengths and weaknesses of leaders. Traditionally, employees get feedback from only their supervisor, which produces a one-dimensional perspective.
A primary goal of 360 feedback is for those “blind spots” to be revealed in a safe way. These blind spots, when they're weaknesses, can be detrimental to the leader and to the company.
Uncovering unknown strengths can also be highly beneficial to the leader and the company. The crux of the matter is that the leader is unaware of them and they need to be brought to light in a constructive manner.
Revealing a strength and then working to improve on it usually does produce the most growth. At the same time, improvement areas can be worked on so that they aren’t a hindrance.
3. It Builds Confidence and Boosts Morale
This process can effectively increase the confidence of your leaders. By receiving positive feedback, a leader's confidence about their skills often grows.
Leaders may begin to feel better about the company as well. This boosts morale within the workplace. The key here is that the feedback is given in a constructive manner.
4. It Creates a Culture of Openness
The process will boost transparency if leaders get proper training before beginning. This openness can lead to more productive people, teams, and a more cohesive environment.
5. It Empowers Leaders and Employees
It’s important for leaders and employees to feel they have a voice. When people feel they have no voice, they quickly feel less empowered and become disengaged.
In the US, only 46% of employees feel they have a voice. Over time, this causes them to feel as if they don’t matter to the organization. If not empowered and given a voice, they will disengage and eventually leave. Ensuring that your employees are heard increases their sense of empowerment and morale.
6. It Reduces Leader and Employee Turnover
Open, constructive communication helps expose hidden issues. It also increases the sense of empowerment and voice of your leaders and employees.
Long-term development plans can target those areas that need to be addressed. Your employees and leaders feel heard and remain with the organization because they feel valuable and affirmed.
7. It Increases Accountability
One notable benefit with 360 degree feedback is that it increases accountability. Research shows that 91% of workers feel employee accountability is important at work. But, only 82% believed they could hold a coworker accountable when they did something wrong.
This process is a means for leaders to hold others accountable in a positive, effective manner.
8. It’s the Launching Point for Effective Professional Development
Feedback from 360 evaluations is a perfect starting point for individual leaders. Without a program like this, issues often become chronic and boil over. But these systems are designed to extract problem areas in a positive manner.
9. It Fosters Continuous Improvement
The main premise behind continuous improvement is that it’s an ongoing process. It emphasizes incremental change over breakthrough change, although both can play a role in the growth.
This training is perfect for continuous improvement because it highlights improvement areas. But it also provides a means for working on them over time.
10. It’s a Way to Change Your Company’s Culture
Every person must change or they become stagnant. The same holds true for companies. They must change or they’ll become stagnant and caught in yesteryear.
The problem with corporate change is that it demands paradigm shifts of everyone and it’s hard to put in place.
This sort of change must come from the inside. You must grow your employees before you see substantive change in the organization. The foundation of 360 degree feedback is to effect personal change that spurs professional change.
How Can You Take Advantage Of 360 Degree Feedback?
Whether you're an entrepreneur with a small company or an HR director of a fortune 500 organization, you can likely benefit from 360 training.
An easy and affordable way to get started is with 360 assessment test. They can be purchased for specific applications and scaled up or down to meet your needs.
This article was published by Edge Training, a leader in employee development. To learn even more about 360 degree feedback, contact Edge Training at 800-305-2025.