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360 Feedback



  • 360 feedback is the process by which performance evaluations of an employee are collected from multiple sources including: subordinates, peers, customers, self-ratings, supervisor ratings, vendors, and suppliers.


1.1 Other Names

  • Multi-Rater feedback

  • Multi-Source feedback

  • Full-Circle appraisal

  • Group Performance Review

1.2 N.B.

  • 270 Degree Feedback:: You may apply feedback in selected areas without hurting the integrity of the 360 degree principle

  • You may elect to do 360 degree feedback for just one project

  • 360 feedback is usually given anonymously

  • Fairer and more Rounded View of Performance within and outside the organization

  • Individual & Team Development

  • Organizational Change

  • Alignment of people with strategic goals

  • Employee Engagement

  • Customer Involvement

  • Performance Improvement

  • Comprehensive

    All aspects of the employee's performance are captured.

  • Objective

    Feedback is less vulnerable to bias and thus more objective.

  • Accurate

    The use of raters from different sources increases the validity of assessments.

  • Improved job performance

    Objective feedback increases job performance

  • Goal setting

    Provides the ideal environment for goal setting initiatives.

  • Employee development

    Awareness of his/her strengths and weaknesses, and therefore serve as a guide to personal development planning

  • Reinforces organizational culture

    A good 360 feedback process communicates key organizational competencies and values, reinforcing organizational culture. 360 degree feedback places emphasis on teamwork, customer service, quality control, and process improvement.

  • Better supervisor communication

    The supervisor concentrates on the strengths and weaknesses of an employees' performance.

  • Linking to business strategy

    Effective capability development requires a clear understanding of how individual performance links to organizational strategy and critical success factors. clarify the impact of organizational strategy in determining the competencies critical to individual performance.

  • Identifying critical competencies

    Select the right competencies. Whether it is matching our questionnaire items to your existing competency model, constructing a new future-focused competency model, or something in-between,

  • Integration with HR systems and business strategy

    Including a business-driven competency model, selection, succession, assessment, curriculum development, development planning and activities, training, follow-up, and progress monitoring..


4.1 Step one: Determine Data Collection Methodology

  • The purpose of data collection is to learn about critical incidents/stories that reflect effective performance of the job or role targeted in the study.

  • Decide who will be interviewed (population or sample size).

  • Determine data collection format (one-on-one interviews/focus groups).

  • Choose data recording methods (taping, using two interviewers, extensive note taking by one interviewer).

4.2 Step two: Conduct interviews and focus groups

  • Provide the interviewee with background on the project and a preliminary set of questions to ensure the discussion is focused and to the point.

  • Use open-ended questions (allows interviewee to respond in a full and complete manner).

  • Ask for stories and examples (show what they do, how they do it, and why they do it).

  • Search for specifics (ask follow up questions to uncover the thought processes, specific behaviors used to resolve a situation).

  • Avoid leading or directing the interviewee (by using empathetic responses or prompting them).

  • Establish a comfortable, open environment (begin with a few words of welcome; have people introduce themselves etc.)

  • Let the interviewee talk (90% of the time).

  • In regard to focus groups, have an agenda and stick to it (ensure consistency of data collection by making sure all the questions are covered in the time allotted)

  • Ensure that everyone participates (individuals should not dominate the conversation and facilitator should engage the quiet individuals).

4.3 Step three: Direct Observation of Jobs

  • What people say they do and what they actually do sometimes differ because they may describe the ideal behavior or expected response.

  • Direct observation offers a reality check against the information gathered during the interviews and creates a realistic picture of effective job behaviors.

  • Observe at least three people who have not been previously interviewed from each performance category - exceeds, meets and falls below criteria.

  • Observations need to take place on a typical day - no special events scheduled.

  • Observer should sit away from the main interaction but close enough to hear the conversation.

  • Observer should avoid making eye contact with incumbent or others present, and avoid inappropriate cues i.e. raised eye brows, heavy sighs, or slumping)

4.4 Step four: Develop an Interim Competency Model

  • Examine the data collected during interviews, focus groups or observations for themes and patterns, which are then analyzed to identify relevant competencies.

  • Identification of themes and patterns (individual work). The interviewer combs through the information gathered and identifies common themes and patterns.

  • Start with a general idea (based on repeated behaviors and skills., and patterns emerging in the interviewees descriptions of how they handled specific situations).

  • Start with a blank list (data analyst records any quote that refers to particular skill, knowledge, or characteristics. Using the complete list, the frequency of similar comments is noted).

  • Identification of themes and patterns (project team meeting). All individual interviewers review the themes and patterns emerging from the interviews and the supporting evidence of such themes and patterns.

  • As a result of the group review some themes will be reshaped, others eliminated and interim competency model will be produced.

4.5 Step five: Finalize Your Model

For the model to be used effectively it needs to:

  • have Face validity (the competencies described in the model must make sense to those performing the job) and

  • it must be validated as a predictor of successful performance (competencies must be demonstrated by the top performers in the job).

To assure you're there, consider the following:

a. Test the competency Model

The purpose is to test the accuracy and relevance of the interim model with a broader cross section of incumbents and stakeholders than that included in the initial data collection phase.

Circulate the model to a wider audience (ensures all relevant competencies have been captured and uncovers meaningful demographic or functional differences in the applicability of the model).

Collect data (survey or focus groups) to determine how well people currently in the position or role feel that the competencies reflect the skills, knowledge, abilities,; and personal characteristics necessary to succeed.

b. Analyze the new data and refine the model

New data will enable the interviewer to determine if their assumptions about needed competencies are shared by most incumbents and informed observers. Eliminate items considered unimportant, add or modify items viewed as more relevant.

c. Validate and Finalize the Competency Model

By now the interim model has been tested and refined and determined to have a high degree of face validity.

  • If the model is to be used for training and development only, face validity may be sufficient.

  • If the model is to be used as a basis for selection, appraisal, or compensation systems the additional step of validating the model is essential.

  • If the model is used for hiring decisions, it needs to show how well the competencies predict success.

  • If the model is used for performance appraisal decisions and recommendations, it needs to show how often the most effective managers use the competencies and when they correlate with measures of performance such as productivity, increases in sales or profit, employee satisfaction etc.

A validation study:

  • Convert competencies into a 360 questionnaire.

  • Select four to six specific and observable behaviors that illustrate competency on the job.

  • Arrange the items so that they illustrate each competency in a survey format.

  • A rating scale accompanying such a list allows bosses, direct reports, colleagues, and customers to rate the importance of the competency, how often it has been used, and how often it should actually be used.

  • Distribute the questionnaire to managers (appropriate sample size) who are above, at and below the performance criteria developed during the first stage of the project (keep performance levels confidential).

  • Instruct them to distribute the questionnaire to five or seven direct reports, five to seven colleagues, and all of their supervisors.

  • The raters complete the questionnaire and return it.

  • Use a third party outside the organization to conduct perform the statistical analysis, and to ensure confidentiality.

  • Tabulate the scores for each individual and analyze the strength of the relationship between the competencies and the aggregate ratings of the different performance groups.

  • If there is a significant correlation between the competency and the high- performance group, the competency is said to have concurrent validity.

  • Significant differences between competency scores of high performers and low performers are also considered.

  • If there are weak relationships between a competency and the high performance group, consider reviewing the clarity of the behavior descriptions.

  • The soundness of the performance criterion used to select the groups could also explain the weak relationship.

d. Finalize the model

  • Using the analysis of the 360-degree data, finalize the model by eliminating any categories or items that do not correlate with effectiveness.

  • At this point the competencies and their associated behaviors can be used as the basis for developing or enhancing tools used for human resource decision-making and establishing performance coaching priorities.

  • Lack of participation

  • Misuse of information

  • Open the door to scope creep

  • Backfire in formal appraisals

  • May be used to attack others

  • Disillusionment from no follow-up

  • The ability to integrate competencies into the day-to-day activities is very critical to organizational success today. The Capability model defines six core capabilities critical to how individuals contribute to organizational performance. The capabilities have, at their core, outcomes that help drive organizational effectiveness. Each capability is further defined by a set of integrated competencies necessary to fulfill that capability.

Capabilities and Essence


Optimizing Business Processes

Ensuring that resources and processes contribute to business strategies

Planning for Results

Improving Work Processes

Coordinating Implementation

Working the System

Making Insightful Decisions

Integrating personal and business expertise to determine the best course of action

Understanding Value Creation

Analyzing Business Issues

Creating Innovative Solutions

Making Tough Choices

Facilitating Meaningful Change

Seizing opportunities to inspire and sustain value-creating change

Taking Initiative

Creating Shared Vision

Sustaining Momentum

Developing Human Talents

Driving business growth through continuous learning

Ensuring Personal Readiness

Developing Others

Cultivating a Learning Environment

Communicating on Purpose

Sharing information to build knowledge and focus action

Delivering Clear Messages

Encouraging Dialogue

Influencing with Credibility

Building Organizational Knowledge

Building Productive Relationships

Developing a network of people to fully leverage contributions to business success

Creating Mutual Trust

Confronting Constructively

Leveraging Diversity

Collaborating for Results

Creating a Collaborative Culture

Earning the Customer’s Business


Value created by the effective execution of the competencies

Containing Costs

Achieving Quality

Accelerating Work

Creating New Approaches and Products

Adapting to Changing Conditions