Four Ways to Respond to a 360 Review

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A 360 review offers benefits for both the company and for employees by providing – hopefully – constructive feedback. It can allow for peer-to-peer guidance so that a company and employees can improve operations, productivity, and profitability.

However, a negative review or comments can be potentially damaging to an employee’s career. Sometimes the information in the review may not even be accurate.

There are four ways to positively respond to a 360 review.

First, use a review – positive or negative – as an opportunity to demonstrate leadership and to express gratitude. This can be an opportunity demonstrate that as an employee, you are willing to continue to develop strengths while minimizing weaknesses. It is an opportunity to show that you (a) are receptive to criticism and listen to feedback, and (b) are willing to improve.

Second, take time before responding. It is easy to be defensive to a negative review, especially when it can put your career at risk. It is critical to take time to formulate a strategy on how to proceed to avoid making a regretful comment in the heat of the moment.

Third, discuss negative criticisms with the appropriate individuals. If the negative reviews are from a supervisor, it is important to change the supervisor’s opinion, especially if the review is inaccurate. If the criticisms are from an individual you are managing, recognize that there might be more validity to the feedback as the individual has more to lose by providing a negative review. Using a third party to help mediate these discussions can be helpful to allow for constructive dialogue.

Finally, plan the necessary steps and share these steps with the appropriate team members. Continue to improve your strengths. Determine what the key limitations are and figure out a strategy on how to minimize these issues in the future. Develop an action plan that you can communicate to your team. Again, this will allow you to demonstrate critical leadership skills, turning a potentially negative situation into a positive one.