I have a dream. Some may call it a fantasy, but I like to think of it as a real possibility. My dream becomes full reality before I leave this earth (I never claimed not to be ambitious!) when I see that we no longer need to use 360’s in our organizations because:
There are no toxic managers. Our successful organizations are filled with the right kind of leaders; those who are brilliant but balanced with attention to both the business and the people side too. They truly “get” and act on the worn out maxim that “our people are our greatest asset” (but they don’t need to say this because it is so evident).
Leaders know – and act on – being of service to followers. Our organizations are no long hierarchical. At last; the time has come when leaders understand that their role is to serve and not “running” our organizations and communities. They are instead orchestrating workplaces with significance and meaning for employees and customers.
Leaders receive honest feedback on a regular basis without asking for it. Leaders in our future don’t need 360’s to give them anonymous information on their behavior. Positive and “corrective” feedback is given freely and without consequences to the messenger. The leaders continually get better because they act on the feedback they receive. They know that by identifying less than helpful behavior and improving themselves, they will make the biggest impact on their organization and the bottom line.
Developing staff is as important as the bottom line. Leaders are paying full attention to assuring that there are new leaders with the potential to take their place when they leave. Their organizations don’t balk at allocating resources to develop a pipeline of leaders. Dare I mention that annual performance evaluations are also a thing of the past because leaders coach their staff on a daily basis?
Every workplace is a “best” one. The idea that “you should be grateful that you have a job” is long gone. Instead, leaders are grateful to have the best employees working at their organizations. All of those “best places to work” contests have gone out of business because of the abundance of best places to work; it’s too hard to choose with so many contenders.
360’s are a featured item in the Leadership Museum. You walk into the Leadership Museum and are guided past wax replicas of ruthless leaders and famous consultants. You stop at a window that has an aging, yellowed 360 report and think, “What is that?”. You listen to the recorded history lesson and are astounded and saddened that such a thing ever existed.
What will you see when 360’s are obsolete?