Traditional performance management is under attack. Many companies and their employees want to put an end to current annual performance review processes – performance management in many companies has become a paper-shuffling process that often doesn't clearly drive improved performance, at least not for much of the year during an annual review cycle. However, the core need for feedback for improvement is omnipresent, and 360° feedback processes can drive the desire for improvement when done well. The Harvard Business Review, article “Reinventing Performance Management” by Marcus Buckingham and Ashley Goodall cited Deloitte’s public survey of nearly 3,000 executives found that nearly 58 percent of the respondents reported not believing the company’s performance management processes drove either employee engagement or high performance. “They, and we, are in need of something nimbler, real-time, more individualized, something squarely focused on fueling performance in the future rather than assessing the past.” Deloitte’s reference to spending 2 million hours conducting annual performance reviews warrants such a survey and further review into what tools and processes truly influence high performance efficiently. The need for individualized, efficient performance management that truly drives positive impact is critical to the success of the business strategy. A valid 360° feedback tool is designed to be future-focused and a platform for the identification of individualized, coachable action items to provide impactful insights for performance going forward. The multi-rater feedback and coaching through this process enhance self-realization in ways that are almost impossible otherwise. 360° feedback tools can be customized based on company/individual goals, promotional opportunities, and more. The tool should also be inclusive of the individual ratee’s responsibilities/areas of focus such as business acumen, team leadership, results orientation, etc. Carl Jung stated that “Through pride, we are ever deceiving ourselves. But deep down below the surface of the average conscience, a still, small voice says to us, something is out of tune.” Providing employees valid, results-oriented feedback and investing in coaching key talent will reward both individuals and the company. As companies consider the validity of their current performance management processes it’s advisable to look at partnerships and tools that align with business strategy and hold the fundamental expertise to add value. Multi-rater tools such as a 360° feedback tool and the process can truly be a game-changer.
Amanda Connelly, Senior Vice President, Leadership Development. Career Management Partners (CMP).