The article describes the research findings on the 360-degree feedback process. The research discovered six critical factors, or best practices, to help organizations get the most from their investment in the process. Additionally, the research found that organizations that derive the most benefit from the 360 feedback process use it for individual development planning, coaching, and feedback; and carefully manage every step of the process, from choosing who will participate to investing in extensive training for all involved employees. Originally, 360 feedback was used to accelerate the growth and development of a talented participant. Over the years, the uses of 360 feedback have expanded significantly to include not only executive development, feedback, individual development planning and coaching but also career development, training, performance, appraisal, compensation, succession planning and team building. As organizations began to use 360 feedback for purposes other than individual development, the process often failed. Some participants felt penalized is scores on the feedback were linked to their success within the organization. The tendency of organizations to exert control over each aspect of the 360 feedback process represents a shift from the external to the internal, changing roles of line managers, internal human resource staff and the external consultant.
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