Imagine this scenario:
You are working with a senior leader who has been very “successful” in their role, meeting their goals, and objectives. This leader is driven to make a difference, really cares about their team, the business, and the customer, but something is off. Their team or peers are really struggling to work with him, and this misalignment is starting to have negative impacts like:
This leader appears to be self-reflective and open to feedback; yet seems convinced he is doing everything right and can’t understand why people are reacting to him in this way.
This is an ideal time for a 360° assessment.
It provides the leader and their coach (or manager) with a perspective about how others see him. This data can lead to insights and discovery about the interpretation and impact of his behaviors, which might be very different than his intentions.
It is an assessment for a single person where they receive anonymous input from their direct reports, manager, peers, and other stakeholders. Additionally, they rate themselves – which provides an interesting measure to see if their assessment of their own leadership aligns with how others perceive him/her. In short, the leader gets a report with a 360-degree look of how others perceive them – which is a powerful coaching tool.
My favorite 360° is the 363° by Wiley because it suggests three specific behaviors to work on and even provides suggested activities. I also like this version because there are no open-ended comments, so there is less room for misinterpretation, confusions, and trying to guess who said what based off how it is written.
I’ve coached leaders who have scored very low on the original assessment, and six months later they had dramatically increased their scores. Once a leader is aware of the specific behaviors that are impeding their success, they can modify their behaviors and improve relationships. It takes a combination of awareness, willingness, and analysis which is why working with a coach through the process increases the likelihood that they will have success.
About the Author: Leigh Ann Rodgers, Founder of Better Teams and Forward, is an IAF Certified Professional Facilitator with 20 years of experience in the human development field. Leigh Ann is a skilled meeting facilitator, trainer, and coach working across the globe to help leaders cultivate teams that are happy and high-performing.
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