If you happen to hear that your company is going to start use 360 assessments, follow these guidelines and you can be assured no harm will come to you and your fellow managers:
1. If you can, avoid them! HR can’t make you do anything, right? Sure, we all know we’re supposed to go to the dentist twice a year and floss, but if we would rather drink our food through a straw, that’s our own damn business.
Same goes for management – the key to success is to cover up your flaws and bury your head in the sand like an ostrich. No good will come from a 360 or any kind of real feedback.
2. However….if they track you down and force you to take one, try to pick your own raters. Use the “friends and family plan” system. If you can’t pick your own raters, then use threats or bribes to get raters to inflate their scores and say nice things about you.
3. Make sure your raters are notified by one of those impersonal, system generated emails. “Dear rater” is a nice touch. That way, they will know you’re not really serious and may just delete it. Better yet if it ends up in their spam folder.
5. Remember that self-assessment? “Forget” to do it. Hope that a missing questionnaire will hold up the report and someone will forget to run it. Besides, self-reflection is for losers.
However, if you tracked down and forced to do your own, give yourself all high scores and write nice things about yourself in the comment sections.
6. If all else fails and a report is generated, spend all of your time trying to figure out where the low scores came from and who gave you the critical comments. It’s fun to play detective! Compare comments to past emails, try to crack the software security, or try to trick people into revealing their scores and comments.
7. If someone offers to “help you interpret the report and create a development plan”, refuse the offer. These do-gooders only want to make you uncomfortable and will make fun of you behind your back. Do not return their calls and emails and they will go away.
8. Have a follow-up meeting with your raters to try to convince them your low score are just “a perception issue”. These meetings are also helpful in finding out who gave you the low scores. When you ask for clarification around a low score, and some idiot raises their hand, bingo, there’s the culprit!