No. 25

The Navigator
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Hello from San Diego and welcome to our first Navigator of the year. We hope 2016 is filled with abundant  personal and professional growth.

In this issue of the Navigator, we begin a three part series on Survey Guided Leadership Development: The Rise of 360s. In this issue we will specifically explore why there is currently such an interest in 360s, and what makes them succeed and why they fail.
FeaturedArticle360 Feedback Craze
While multi-rater surveys have been around for decades, recent years have seen rapidly growing use of 360s to drive leadership development. If done well they can provide an impressive return-on-investment. Their popularity can also be explained because they are an extremely custom experience for each participant, are asynchronous (can accommodate individual schedules versus having to match a workshop date), identify strengths to leverage, and result in a personally relevant development plan. Right now over 90% of the Fortune 1000 employ 360s in one fashion or another, and they are growing in popularity around the world in cultures where upward feedback is NOT a norm.

360 Practice: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Of course realizing a gain from implementing 360s does require much more than administering surveys. We'll offer some observations, and implied advice, from our decade's old history with the methodology.

The Good
Our experience has shown that the survey guided programs that really work understand that the initial 360 events of diagnosis (survey administration), feedback and action planning are really only the start and only 20% of success. The other 80% of benefit is from the accountability provided by organizational support (e.g., coaching) and the disciplined follow-up (e.g., developmental goals baked into the performance management system) of milestones, feedback, and goal accomplishment. It is in this follow up where the true gain is realized! Success with 360s also involves using them strictly for development. And that means a firewall between 360 results and any selection, placement, or performance appraisal application. To read more on the system required to support a successful 360 program click here and here.

The Bad   
Programs that have good intent but fail to realize their full potential tend to be ones that have heard that 360s are worthwhile, want to jump on the bandwagon, but tend to implement them only through the diagnostic phase. For example, we know of one large international organization that requires a biennial 360 on EVERY manager in the system (hundreds of managers). They were pleased that they could check the 360 "box" and that they had implemented this significant leadership development program. But at a recent team building event with a group of tactical leaders, it was revealed that the process actually ENDED with a PDF feedback report being emailed to each participant without any coaching meeting or action planning. All of the leaders found the feedback interesting (but had a difficult time recalling specifics), and many could not actually locate their reports. Obviously, this is a missed opportunity in terms of individual understanding, ownership, and personal development.

The Ugly
Our worst case 360 scenarios involve entering into organizations where 360s suffer a terrible reputation usually caused by a prior misuse in selection or placement. Or they have been damaged from use strictly as "fixit" remedies for poorly performing leaders. If you are taking a 360, then there must be something wrong with you. In these situations, the 360 is seen as a more selfish management tool that often puts individual participants at risk. This definitely compromises any developmental purpose and can erode trust in the process. It's our conclusion that 360 applications outside development do politicize the process. This is similar to classic findings in performance appraisal that you NEVER mix conversations about appraisal ratings connected to pay or promotions with developmental discussions. When pay, promotion, or even jobs are on the line, development takes a back seat.

360 Tomorrow?

A well executed 360 process has definitely proven its worth. And with the increasing shift to digital and virtual training, on-line survey guided development does provide a custom, asynchronous option to develop leaders across the talent pipeline. But it can be both high tech and high touch with telephone feedback and coaching. 360s are here to stay.

And speaking of on-line training, one exciting development at OSI is a pending partnership with Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN which will add a proven on-line development option in key competency areas.

© 2016 Organization Systems International
Welcome to the Newest Members of the Polaris® Family

OSI is pleased to announce Hydro Flask and Grand Central Bakery as the newest members to the Polaris® License Community.

Polaris® Certification Workshop

On Wednesday, June 8th, OSI will be holding a Polaris® Certification Workshop. This one day workshop will be for certified coaches and/or HR professionals interested in the OSI Polaris® Competency Model and its supporting applications, especially the 360 degree development. If you are interested in further information or to register, please contact Crystal Matsuura at cmatsuura@orgsysint.com or 858.455.0923.

Co-authored by our very own president/senior consultant, Bruce Griffiths, and our business partner, Enrique Washington. Competencies at Work is a thorough, yet digestible look at contemporary competency modeling. It will equip readers to understand, build, and implement competency models as a foundational and integrating element in talent management systems. Readers will understand how competency models have evolved to be the current best-practice in defining criteria for all talent management applications such as selection interviews, promotion panels, assessment centers, job descriptions, and learning objectives. The book also provides specific guidance in the steps needed to establish a sustainable model, with research results on universal competencies contained in most contemporary models.

Competencies at Work is available now through Business Expert Press or Amazon.
At Organization Systems International, we are celebrating over 35 years of quality, service, and innovation. We deliver client success with a high-performance approach designed to enhance occupational relationships, improve operational efficiency, and sustain customer relationships.

American Greetings
Blizzard Entertainment
Bowling Green State University
Dow Corning Corp.
GE Capital
Insurance Company of the West
Johns Lyng Group
Lawrence Livermore National Labs
Limited Brands
Lipscomb University
Nike, Inc.
Portland State University
Schneider Trucking Company
Standard Insurance Company
Starwood Hotels & Resorts
State Auto Insurance
The Walt Disney Company
Wendy's International Inc.