To grow leaders effectively, you must provide valuable feedback about their performance, their strengths and improvement areas, and more.
Custom 360 assessments are the ideal tool for this because they offer a proven approach to leadership development, with a customized focus that allows them to be more effective for your industry and your leaders’ positions.
Most 360 degree feedback tools are proven to be successful, but the results are enhanced when you leverage custom 360 assessments.
Research has proven that asking for feedback from others in the organization strongly correlates to a leader’s overall effectiveness. In fact, the top-ranked leaders in terms of effectiveness were also ranked in the top 10% in terms of their willing to ask for feedback.
The leaders who ranked the lowest in terms of overall effectiveness were also ranked in the bottom 10% in terms of effectiveness as a leader. The research resoundingly shows that your openness to receiving feedback is linked to your effectiveness as a leader.
But, not everybody can be so good at seeking feedback on their own. That’s where custom 360 leadership assessments help out.
What is a 360 leadership assessment?
A 360 degree leadership assessment is a form of feedback for leaders in which their skills, effectiveness, influence and other competencies are evaluated. Employees get a multi-rater picture of their performance as perceived by others. This information is gathered via confidential feedback from supervisors, peers, direct reports, and internal or external customers and put into a detailed 360 degree feedback report.
Aligned with the appropriate core competencies, the 360 feedback assessment report includes a Knowledge Performance Grid, which incorporates the learner’s skills knowledge and perception data – providing leaders with the most comprehensive individual leadership profile available.
Achieve more with customized 360 assessments
There are many 360 assessment providers available on and offline. The majority of these assessments are considered “generic” assessments, which can provide good results for just about any organization.
But there’s a better approach than simply plugging in these generic assessments. Using customized 360 leadership assessments can drastically enhance your results because they become much more relevant and applicable for your specific needs.
What a 360 leadership assessment is not?
It’s important to note that a 360 leadership assessment should not be used alone as a complete performance review or appraisal tool. Instead, the assessment should be added as part of a larger development program. When used incorrectly, 360 assessments can provide biased and inaccurate data that will not help your organization.
When 360 assessments are applied correctly–alongside other tools–they will have an incredible impact on how your leaders receive and leverage feedback and on their development within the organization.
What competencies do 360 leadership assessments measure?
Leadership assessments evaluate a leader’s skills based on a series of competencies that are common to most effective leaders. These competencies may include:
- Executive’s strengths
- Areas of improvement
- Individual and organizational communication
- Self-regulation and the ability to deal with problems
- Composure under pressure
- Listening skills
- Offering helpful feedback and effective coaching
- Readiness to ask for input, ideas and advice
- Effectiveness in motivating others
- Controlling organizational flow and performance management
- Planning and setting attainable and measurable goals
- Problem solving
- Ability to lead
No leader has all of these competencies as strengths, nor should it be expected. This is where a well-devised and implemented leadership assessment can help to understand their strengths and improvement needs. If implemented properly, a 360 leadership assessment can be provide feedback for need areas in the short-term and also help build a developmental plan for the long-term.
How to implement your 360 leadership assessment
The procedure for conducting a 360 degree assessment is clear. If any of these variables are missing, the evaluation may not be as effective as you’d like. These are the steps:
- The assessment must be created. Work with a leadership development professional to implement the most relevant and applicable questions to get the best results.
- Executives, HR or other appropriate personnel then select the colleagues who will answer the assessment questions—this may include peers, supervisors and even customers who know the leader's work and leadership style well.
- The respondents are asked to be honest and thoughtful in the interest of helping the executive grow and improve.
- The respondents answer the questions to the anonymous assessment. The colleagues must be assured that the assessment is anonymous in order to receive unfiltered feedback.
- A facilitator or coach compiles the answers into a summary report in which the core competencies are outlined and explained.
- Once the results are shared, the leader will work with the appropriate personnel to review the results, identifying their strengths and areas that need improvement.
- The appropriate personnel will then take the feedback, combining it with other development and assessment results, to assess the leader.
- Lastly, the results are used to create a development plan for the leader, which should be reviewed periodically and can be led by an assigned development coach.
What could cause a 360 leadership assessment to fail?
When implemented well, 360 degree leadership assessments align your leaders’ goals with those of the organization. They help build a clear path for individual and professional growth and development, both in the short-term and long-term.
They can also provide a sense of how internal assets are getting along and how well they work together. However, there are reasons that a 360 assessment could fail to provide helpful results. Here are the most common issues that prevent organizations from leveraging 360 assessments:
- Assessments aren’t executed well or administered by an experienced coach who knows how to give such an assessment. With Edge Training Systems, the full 360 assessment process is managed so you don’t have to worry about this.
- Assessments are implemented with no follow up. This is a mistake since the proper interpretation of the feedback is critical to the effectiveness of the assessments.
- The leader, the facilitator, the executives or even the organization as a whole is not prepared to leverage the results. In order for the feedback to have an impact, the leader must be primed for development and all others in the process must be equipped to facilitate their growth and development. Fortunately, Edge Training Systems will take on much of this responsibility so that you can take full advantage of the assessments.
- The assessment ceases to be anonymous, and who said what gets out. This can turn into a major issue when it happens. This is the reason that Edge Training Systems manages the assessment process, ensuring complete discretion for all parties involved.
Unlock the potential of your leaders with custom 360 assessments
Get more from your leaders with the power of a 360 assessment, customized specifically for your organization’s needs.
Our custom 360 leadership assessments leverage specific sets of core competencies to have the most impact on development. All feedback is managed by Edge Training Systems to ensure confidentiality. You also get access to action planning tools, e-Learning courseware and other development resources to ensure that the process continues beyond the questions in the assessments.
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