Why You Should Perform 360 Degree Assessments: 10 Benefits to Managers

May 31 05:58 2012 Sylvia Hepler Print This Article

Without exception, persons in management positions can benefit significantly from a 360 degree assessment conducted by an outside consultant or coach. Learn more about this type of assessment and the benefits it provides managers and their business in this article.

Without exception,Guest Posting persons in management positions can benefit significantly from a 360 degree assessment conducted by an outside consultant or coach.  This type of assessment provides managers with an unfiltered view of their “performance” in the workplace according to a selected group of employees who represent several or all layers of the organization.  The hired third party interviews (face to face or by phone) up to ten staffers, using a standardized set of pre-established open-ended questions approved by the manager.  After the interviews are completed, the consultant or coach prepares a comprehensive summary of the common themes and trends, carefully protecting each employee’s privacy.  The following is a list of the major benefits to such an assessment:

1.  The manager learns how staff view her daily behaviors.

This piece of the final report shows the manager exactly how her know-it-all attitude or inaccessibility affects her employees.  It provides her with examples of how her anger problem stifles morale, how her silent treatment creates fear, or how her constant interrupting during conversations shuts people down.

2.  The manager receives evidence of his strengths.  

In this section of the report the manager reads a comprehensive list of his strengths according to the staff who were interviewed.  In addition, the manager learns what he does better than anyone else his employees have ever known throughout their careers as well as specifically what they count on him for.

3.  The manager gains insight around her weaknesses.

This section reports obvious weaknesses as identified by the staff.  This is where a failure to serve as a credible, steady resource to employees shows up.  It’s where gossiping or lack of genuine interest in people gets mentioned.

4.  The manager receives feedback about certain aspects of his professional image.

This piece discusses the manager’s body language, speech, dress, approachability, character, integrity, likeability, and confidence.  Employees have been given the opportunity to weigh in on these components, citing examples of both positive and negative evidence.

5.  The manager learns how her staff interpret her frame of mind and world view.

In this section the manager reads about whether or not her employees see her as emotionally stable, grounded, solid, fair, supportive, optimistic, and/or generally eager to jump into the day.  Managers with great talent and skill are sometimes surprised to learn that staff question their emotional stability or motivation or ability to serve as leaders.

6.  The manager finds out how his staff see him as a human being.

Here the manager reads a detailed, collective description of himself.  This can be enlightening and humbling.  It’s not unusual for employees to know their manager as a good and decent person who is not capable of leading a department to greatness.  But the reverse can be true too.  Sometimes employees talk about a boss with noteworthy technical skills who is self serving, self absorbed, and disconnected from others.

7.  The manager gets a peek at how others view her outside of the department.

This piece talks about what staff hear outsiders say about her:  persons in other departments, individuals in the community, stakeholders, etc.  In this section the manager learns about her reputation as “dictator” or “great boss material” or “open minded”.

8.  The manager receives information about his impact upon others.

Here the manager reads about how he makes employees and others feel when he is around them and interacting with them.  He finds out if he makes people nervous and upset or if he inspires them to exceed expectations.

9.  The manager gets clues about her professional and personal development needs.

In this section the manager gains insight around the technical and/or soft skills her staff want her to acquire and implement.  As she reads this, she has the opportunity to learn specifically how they think she should grow over the next year or so.

10. The manager learns how he influences his employees’ attitudes, work performance, and job satisfaction.

This piece allows the manager to read an assessment of his degree and type of influence upon his employees.  He may now understand that he either de-motivates people or excites them, throws stumbling blocks their way or finds ways to support them, kills their satisfaction or fuels it.

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About Article Author

Sylvia Hepler
Sylvia Hepler

Sylvia Hepler, Owner and President of Launching Lives, LLC, is an executive coach based in South Central PA.  Her ideal clients are persons in management positions:  corporate, nonprofit, and business owners.  Her company mission is to support executives as they solve problems, develop leadership skills, and increase balance in their lives.  Sylvia offers three programs, any of which may overlap depending on client need:  First Class Management Program; Change, Loss, and Grief Program; and Career Development Program.  Her professional background includes:  extensive nonprofit management/leadership, public speaking, business writing, retail sales, and teaching.

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