360 Degree Feedback, The Balanced Scorecard & Upwards Feedback
360 degree feedback, balanced scorecard and upwards feedback (providing feedback to the manager, from the employee) are more recent arrivals on the appraisal / performance management scene. On this page we'll help you understand them, what and how to use them, and the strengths and weaknesses of these various more comprehensive methods for improving performance. (note: some links are not yet active, but will be shortly).
Important Tip: If you are considering the use of 360 degree feedback in your organization, we suggest you read as many of the items on this page. While 360 degree feedback has potential to improve performance, it's also has some serious flaws and issues connected with its use. Often, what should work in theory does not work in practice.
- What Is 360 degree feedback?
Need a quick definition of 360 degree feedback? Start here.
- Is 360 degree feedback the same process as "multi-rater feedback" or multi-rater assessment?
We look more closely at terms and meanings, in particular whether multi-rater feedback is the same as 360.
- Is "multi-source feedback the same as 360 degree feedback?
Form more definitional issues - you need to undertand the terms to use 360 feedback
- What is the theoretical ultimate purpose or point of 360 degree feedback?
What claims have been made for the effectiveness of this kind of feedback system. Why "should" it work.
- What principles underlie the practice of 360 degree feedback?
Job feedback or any feedback has some principles associated with it. When you follow the principles things work more effectively.
- Are there legal risks associated with the use of 360? Are they legally defensible?
Understanding that there may be legal risks regarding feedback systems is essential in minimizing exposure to both legitimate, and spurious law suits
- Is there a problem if we use "anonymous feedback" in 360?
One of the key flaws with 360 feedback - the inability of recipients to actually interact with those that are providing feedback, and this severely reduces any possible effectiveness.
- Is there a problem if we use non-anonymous feedback in 360?
On one hand feedback with an identified source (non-anonymous) can be much more effective, because giver and receive can clarify comments and ratings, and there's increased accountability, there can also be problems you need to understand.
- Is forced or mandatory participation in 360 degree feedback a problem?
Forcing people to talk part in 360 feedback systems can cause problems. Here they are.
- Can 360 degree feedback be used to replace traditional performance appraisal systems?
If there is value to be gained with this approach, is it the same value as with traditional appraisal and review systems? The answer is no, for both legal and performance improvement reasons.
- Does 360 degree feedback really work in practice?
The key question. Does it work? First you need to be clear what it is you want to accomplish before answering the questions. What does "work" mean? Generally, though, the answer is no, it doesn't work. It can. Usually it doesn't
- How do I determine if our organization is ready for 360 feedback?
360 "can" have powerful value, but it takes a special organizational culture, team orientation, and more to have so it doesn't cause more damage than it adds.
- Do you have any comments about automating the 360 degree feedback process?
Generally, automation is great for record keeping, but can actually be harmful when it comes to management practice. That applies here, too.
- We're looking at buying 360 degree feedback software. Is there anything we should know?
Make sure you focus on the face to face feedback process as much as possible, rather than the software. Software doesn't make things work, at least in this case.
- Is there an alternative to forced 360 that does
the same thing?
Forced 360 has so many problems, yet the idea of getting information on performance is valuable, since it will help improve things. Are there alternatives to a formal, forced feedback system? There are.