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In over 20 years of coaching owners, founders, CEO’s and managers into Predictable Success, I’ve come to believe that a 360 leadership skills assessment – when effectively used – is a vital step to on the path Predictable Success.
Here are the six primary reasons (there are many others) why I think 360 degree leadership skills assessments are essential in developing a Predictable Success management team, and in turn, a Predictable Success organization:
1. They objectively identify strengths and weaknesses
Most of us have a visceral – gut – sense of our strengths and weaknesses. However, while a ‘gut’ sense will build early 'Fun’ growth, it isn’t enough to achieve Predictable Success.
To get there, we need objective, factual data on what our strengths and weaknesses really are.
A 360 degree assessment provides exactly that.
2. They identify blind spots.
No matter how finely tuned it might be about our strengths and weaknesses, our gut feeling does us no good whatsoever when it comes to our blind spots – by their very nature, we don’t know about them – so we can hardly have a gut feeling about them!
"A Predictable Success manager knows that following a gut feeling is not enough when it comes to achieving Predictable Success" - Les McKeown, Founder and CEO, Predictable Success
We all have blind spots – every one of us. A Predictable Success manager recognizes that fact and seeks to understand more about what those blind spots are, and how to eradicate them.
Again, the 360 degree assessment is ideal for that purpose. In fact, that’s what the name implies – a 360 degree assessment places us in a (metaphorical) room with mirrors all around us – there’s nowhere for those blind spots to hide!
3. They provide a benchmark for development
So many managers spend years inconsistently (or not at all) addressing their development needs. They drift on, depending on the same skill set they had 2, 5, 10 years ago.
Meanwhile, the world has changed, and they are increasingly out of touch with the skills necessary to deliver Predictable Success.
Once your 360 is completed you have a solid bedrock on which to plan your personal development – a detailed analysis with a structured action plan attached.
4. They’re repeatable and consistent
Once you have identified and implemented the personal development plan that comes out of your 360 assessment, you don’t need to spend time wondering if you have, in fact ‘developed’ as a result – you can simply re-run the 360 again and compare results.
5. They build the unity of the management team
Implemented correctly, a 360 assessment process will bring your management team closer together, by drawing peers into a joint process of investigation, analysis and development.
Coached in the right manner, your managers will see the process as a unifying, not a dividing process that increases their alignment around the organization’s Predictable Success goals.
6. They’re cross-functional
To achieve Predictable Success, most organizations need to operate in a much more cross-functional manner.
By it’s nature, the 360 assessment process involves people in working cross-functionally, and helps begin (or cement) a cross-functional culture.