Organizations are always exploring ways to increase productivity, improve the relationships of their employees in the workplace and craft positive and productive cultures.

One way in which they do this is through the assessments of their employees and the subsequent training that occurs due to the findings of these assessments.

Today, companies are shifting from using evaluations to rate or score their employees to using these evaluations as instruments that foster meaningful change and real growth in their workers.

This causes real growth and change in the workplace itself and assists in cultivating company culture.

Any organization striving to create meaningful change and growth in its employees must look at the people who are working at the top. The leadership itself must grow and improve. One of the best ways to do this is through the use of 360 degree assessments. This leads to two questions:

  • What are 360 degree assessments? After taking a cursory look at what 360 degree assessments are, we can address the next question.
  • How do you know you need a 360 assessment for your leaders? The answer is quite simple. You do. Every business does. We’ll look at the reasons why.

The Advantages of a 360 Degree Assessment

One of the main points of the 360 degree feedback process is that it reveals behaviors, attitudes and practices that are hidden from an individual’s awareness.

This is especially helpful for supervisors because they play a key role in the job satisfaction of employees and, subsequently, the willingness of these employees to stay with an organization.

It’s imperative that practices, behaviors and attitudes that are detrimental to the success of that supervisor, their subordinates and possibly the organization be revealed and addressed.

Conversely, a 360 degree assessment also reveals those behaviors, attitudes and practices that are beneficial to the organization but about which the supervisor may be unaware. These highly useful behaviors and characteristics need to be identified and grown as well.

Following are some questions. The answers to these questions can indicate whether your organization needs a 360 leadership assessment for its management. Let’s deal with the general questions that must be asked first.

Do You Want Your Organization to Grow?

For almost all companies, the answer is yes. Most people want their organization to grow; however, most companies allow their workers, especially their leadership, to do things that sabotage that growth.

Often, these things include behaviors and attitudes that are seen in the management, but that peers and subordinates don’t feel safe, comfortable or supported enough to say anything about.

A 360 degree assessment with properly facilitated feedback would fix that problem. The assessment, if administered in the appropriate manner, would highlight these issues.

The feedback and training process would then provide an avenue for facing these issues.

Do You Want Greater Productivity from Your Employees?

Everything starts from the top. It’s nearly impossible to have an exciting, innovative and productive workplace if your leadership isn’t setting that tone and they’re not actively cultivating those traits.

However your leadership operates, eventually you’ll see that reflected in your staff.

Are Any of Your Leaders Micromanagers?

This is a behavior that is a culture killer and productivity annihilator. Most micromanagers aren’t aware of their micromanaging ways.

They tend to think they’re simply an “engaged” and “motivated” supervisor who cares about what’s going on in their department. They don’t see the cases where they went too far and turned into micromanagers that their employees resentment, which leads to the next point.

Are Any of Your Leaders Not Respected or Disliked?

Who hasn’t heard the statement: “I don’t need my employees to like me. I’m not here to win a popularity contest.”

That’s true in a sense: No leader should be in that position if they’re trying to curry favor and get people to like them; however, they still need to be respected, and being liked is okay too.

When employees don’t respect and, possibly, don’t like their leadership, it will be reflected in the turnover rate. Inevitably, employees leave work situations in which they don’t like or respect their leadership.

Does Your Organization or Department Have a High Turnover Rate?

Is your company suffering from the “revolving door” syndrome? A high turnover rate is a clear indication that your leadership has a problem. Employees can bear difficulties and obstacles if they enjoy their workplace and respect and appreciate their leadership.

Do Your Leaders Communicate Well?

Your leaders must be able to communicate in a positive, encouraging manner that fosters a reciprocal attitude in those with whom they’re speaking. They must be able to communicate clearly and concisely.

Employees work better for and with others when the work relationship is positive with open communication. A supervisor who fails to communicate in such a manner will begin to destroy their relationship with their employees.

Do Any of Your Managers Have Hidden Faults or Flaws That They Can’t Seem to See?

If the answer to this question is yes, then your leaders need a 360 degree assessment.

But the truth is: Who doesn’t have hidden faults or issues that they can’t see? Everyone has “stuff” that needs to come out of the darkness and be addressed.

What are some of the flaws that your leaders may not see? They may lack integrity. They may lack strength of character. They may be perceived as capricious and whimsical in their interactions. They may not treat all employees the same.

Ignoring a problem or issue won’t make it go away. In fact, when you’re dealing with a glaring flaw in a supervisor that they can’t seem to see and no one feels comfortable telling them, you have a situation that promises to worsen.

Everyone sees it. Everyone talks about it. Yet, no one will tell that faulty supervisor about their flaw.

Thus, it’ll continue, employees will continue to talk and be resentful, and productivity will decrease. It’s better to use a 360 degree assessment as a vehicle to address the fault or flaw with that errant leader.

Start Using 360 Degree Assessments for Your Leaders

When you take an honest look at what needs to be improved within your organization and where you want to go, it becomes clear that definite steps need to be taken.

Using a 360 degree assessment with your leaders is one of the best options for moving forward and improving. This practice will filter down to your lower-level employees and benefit them as well.

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