360-Degree Feedback – A Must Have Tool for New Managers


According to leaders and frontline managers, new managers need all the new manager training they can get.

According to a recent McKinsey report, nearly 70% of senior executives are only “somewhat” or “not at all satisfied” with the performance of their companies’ frontline managers. And a stunning 81% of frontline managers are not satisfied with their own performance.

This is not surprising.  Those promoted to new leadership roles become accountable for the overall performance of their team.  As a new supervisor, it is no longer enough to succeed on your own hard work as an individual contributor.  Your success becomes dependent upon the success of your team – never an easy or straightforward task.

Accordingly, the first order of business for new managers is to get to know their team charter and their team members, both personally and professionally. The performance results of the team will depend largely upon how well, you, as a new manager assess your own strengths and weaknesses and play to the strengths, weaknesses, interests and motivators of your team.

In addition to the standard and ongoing one-on-one discussions with each team member, new managers can benefit enormously from the use of a 360-degree assessment tool before and after new manager training programs. Not only can new leaders learn about their employees’ development needs but they can also learn how to maximize their own strengths and minimize their blind spots as a new supervisor.

How 360-degree Feedback Works
The survey subject receives feedback from various levels of people with whom they work, including clients, direct reports, peers and managers. The surveys are confidential and anonymous. The purpose of the 360-degree survey is to gather different perspectives on the performance and behaviors of the subject…all with the intent of gaining a full understanding of where the subject excels and where there are areas for development. The results are shared with the survey subject, often in discussion with a manager or coach who can facilitate development opportunities and coach for improved performance over a period of weeks or months.

What 360-degree Feedback Can Do
As a new manager who asks for 360-degree feedback, it shows your team you care about their feedback and improving your performance.  For a team member who you have receive 360-degree feedback, it tells employees that you value them and intend to invest in their future. It gives new managers and employees reliable and objective information about how they are perceived by those who work below, beside and above them. Through the process of sharing results in a respectful way, it shows you honor the partnership and are committed to establishing a safe environment for learning and growth. And it gives you a path to follow together as you each work toward performance improvement.

Sounds great? And it is…as long as the feedback process is supported by company leaders and aligned with the organizational culture. That is the caveat.  The more the results are coordinated with a plan for managing company talent according to the company’s business strategy and within the desired standards of behavior, the more helpful the 360-degree feedback can be. It is the alignment of talent, culture and strategy that gives 360-degree feedback its power. Without the resources and support of leadership, 360-degree feedback can be an exercise in futility. Done right, 360-degree feedback helps put the right people in the right place at the right time.

To learn more about 360-degree feedback, download 8 Reasons New Leaders Need 360 Feedback

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