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I recently had a conversation with a VP who had never received 360° feedback.  It had been recommended a few times throughout his career, but he had “refused to have one done.”

I wondered why…Was it because he didn’t think he needed it?  Or he didn’t care what others thought?  Or was he secretly afraid to find out what others thought of his performance?

Refusing a 360 isn’t going to change what others think.  They’re thinking it anyway…you might as well know!  There’s a “word on the street” about all of us.  It’s what people say behind our backs when we leave the room.  You have to know what that is or you can’t effectively develop yourself.  360° feedback is a great opportunity to find out what your colleagues, employees, customers, and clients think about your leadership skills.

leadership development, executive coaching, leadership skills, leadership styles, leadership training

Unfortunately, we often think we are doing better as leaders than others think we are doing.   Our self-ratings tend to be inflated compared to ratings by others.  And face-to-face feedback is usually more positive than negative, so anonymous 360° feedback can point out some surprising shortcomings.

Ratings from a wide variety of sources can be helpful in bringing key issues to light. It can reduce denial for leaders who have highly inflated perceptions of their performance.  But it takes a brave person with strong character to be willing to look at themselves from all angles!

360°  Feedback:

  • Is powerful, valid information
  • Will help you consider your strengths as well as weaknesses
  • Is based on others’ perceptions – but those perceptions are based in their reality, so carefully consider how they developed

Some leaders end up pleased with the results of their 360° feedback.  Others are shocked and angry at the responses.  Working closely with an HR representative or executive coach is essential in preparing you to receive the feedback.  Trained professionals can ease any apprehension and allow you to evaluate the reality of the results without dismissing them.

Leaders typically go through a 5-stage process after receiving their feedback. The stages are: Shock, Anger, Rejection, Acceptance, and Hope (SARAH).

One of my clients recently shared, “I was in the Anger and Rejection stages last night, but after sleeping on it (or rather, losing some sleep over it!), I’ve begun to Accept my ratings.”

After receiving your feedback:

  • Decide what information is most relevant to you
  • Determine what, if anything, you want to do to change perceptions

It is important to understand that feedback is an essential tool that effective leaders use to develop themselves.  To some degree, the use of 360° measures is a method for accomplishing what should occur on a regular basis.  Proactive and positive leaders regularly seek feedback from others as a basis for continuous improvement.

The purpose of 360° feedback is to help leaders raise self-awareness and eliminate self-defeating patterns of behavior.  At the highest leadership levels, even small changes in behavior can have a big impact on engagement, satisfaction, and productivity.


I believe you have untapped potential within you. How much farther can you go? How much more impact could you have?

Yes, there are obstacles in your path. Barriers to advancement can be a good thing – they ensure only the best rise to the top. But I can give you the tools you need to overcome those barriers.

Getting promoted to higher levels of leadership (and thriving there) requires navigating 4 very specific transitions, or shifts, necessary for success. The Leadershifts coaching intensive describes each of those transitions in detail and shows you how to master them.

The dozens of tiny moving parts around making these 4 critical shifts has become the “Achilles heel” of many a high-potential leader. You, on the other hand, will have access to a revolutionary road map to success. In this coaching intensive, you’ll discover how to:

  • make 4 specific transitions, or shifts, needed to succeed at higher levels of leadership
  • raise your awareness to eliminate self-defeating patterns of behavior
  • communicate with confidence
  • maintain your composure when things go wrong at work
  • create an optimistic and inspiring vision that moves people forward
  • build trust with a stronger, more supportive network of sponsors and mentors
  • increase your leadership agility so you can adapt your behavior to fit new job requirements



positive leadership, leadership development, leadership training

Dr. Stefani Yorges

I am a psychologist and professional leadership coach. I partner with people who want to rise to their full potential so they can have an increasingly greater impact on others.

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