360 Degree Assessmentby Julia Miller
Preparing for your feedback
The 360 degree process is often used as part of one the following:
- A facilitated team workshop
- A facilitated workshop for people from outside your team – your peer group, for example
- A coaching programme
- A mentoring programme
- A self-development guide.
It is often intended to result in some form of action planning.
If you have been rated, look at your report and make sure that you understand it. In general, you will see the report before your feedback session, which gives you a chance to consider your own response to it and identify areas where you may need clarification from the person who is giving the feedback.
What should I look for in my report?
When you receive your 360 report, you will be offered feedback by a trained facilitator as part of the process. Before your feedback session, consider some specific development goals and learning opportunities, and draft your own development plan.
The facilitator will have identified areas on which they would like you to focus, but to help you make the most of the time you have with them, think about some of the following:
- How did you find the process?
- What did you expect the results to look like – if necessary, ask to see a copy of the questionnaire to remind yourself of the questions. Did the results match your expectations?
- Are there any aspects of the report you find confusing or need to have explained to you before you start?
- Does the information in the report seem accurate and valid?
- Look at the responses from different rater groups. How does the information differ between the groups?
- How are you rated in those behaviours that are critical?
- Were there any surprises or key differences in your self-rating compared with the rating of other groups?
- List those behaviours which seem to be strengths of yours and consider how you can use these strengths more.
- Are there any areas where your behaviour seems to be lower than others expect of you?
- If so, consider how you can develop in these areas and identify for which rating groups these behaviours are important.
- Prioritise where you would like to improve.
- Think of some specific changes in behaviour you will make.
If you do not agree with some of the ratings, you might be able to ask for some specific examples. This particularly applies to the rating your boss might have given you, as this is separately identified. Ask your boss to help you understand where you could have done something differently.
If you are upset by the ratings or do not agree with what your raters have said, remind yourself that this is just their perceptions of your behaviour. They are not placing a value judgement on you or the intentions behind your behaviour.
Although it is human nature to do so, try not to guess who has rated you how or compare yourself with others in your team. The process is anonymous and confidential to ensure that ratings and feedback are honestly given.