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The Power of Followup after 360-Degree Feedback

“360 should not be a stand-alone event. There must be development, planning and followup”

(Fleenor et al. 2008).

Maximize the impact of 360 degree feedback by stressing the followup

360 performance reviews are most effective on when it extends beyond employees receiving quantitative data. Self-reflection is encouraged but is more powerful when paired with followup: coaching, goal setting, and positive recognition. It is essential not to underestimate the power of follow up after 360 degree feedback as this is what drives performance change. Underestimating the power of follow-up can cause tension within the organization, waste resources, and does not hold employees accountable for change.

Research by Brurus and Derayeh (2002) states that roughly 20% of organizations do not link 360 degree feedback with other systems or development strategies. This statistic is also consistent with the findings within Vision Metrics’ customer base. Linking the system is a matter of managerial support and strategic planning. This means that if the manager is not used as a resource him or herself, the feedback process is inefficient and lacks the depth it needs to drive employee change.

Dr Frank Shipper (2009) highlights factors to improve the effectiveness of managers in a performance review

  • Executive support and active participation throughout the process is crucial to empower managers
  • Follow up and organizational support by managers forces accountability on the employees
  • Ensuring a supportive environment at the local level is proven to be more effective than a centralized initiative
  • Stressing the purpose of developmental goals for employees to see themselves as part of the organization’s bigger picture

These factors all ultimately revolve around the fact the managers need to feel the support of their organization in order to discuss feedback and implement developmental strategies amongst employees. The encouraging organizational culture that is earned through the support of subordinates, plays a major role in accountability and self-development from all parties (Rutkowski & Steelman, 2005). In other words, an organizational setting that does not empower managers to speak candidly or for subordinates to appreciate a company’s developmental goals will be significantly less likely to benefit from the 360-feedback initiatives.

To conclude, follow up after a performance review is essential to make employees feel accountable for positive change. The inspire this change and make the most of a performance review, it is also important that the manager is able to plan the support for a thorough follow up. This begins by offering a supportive environment for honest feedback and empowerment where both parties can communicate effectively.



Brutus, S., & Derayeh, M. (2002). Multisource assessment programs in organizations: An insider’s perspective. Human Resource Development Quarterly, 13, 187-202.

Rutkowski, K. A., & Steelman, L. A. (2005).Testing a path model for antecedents of accountability. Journal of Management Development, 24(5), 473–486.

Shipper, F. (2009). Investigating the Sustainability of a Sustained 360 Process. The Best Papers Proceedings of The Academy of Management Annual Meeting.



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