360-feedback, management development, multirater feedback, performance appraisal



  1. Kuzmits, Frank E. PhD
  2. Adams, Arthur J. PhD


In recent years, organizations representing all types of industries, including health care, have adopted the 360-feedback approach with the goal of strengthening leader performance. But while 360-feedback enjoys a high level of face validity, current research shows that it is not problem-free and often fails to achieve its goals without proper development and implementation. This research, conducted in a large public hospital, surveyed the top management team of 49 executives who participated in a 360-feedback project beginning in February 2001. The survey, designed to solicit opinions about the effectiveness of the 360-feedback project, resulted in several recommendations to improve the process: One, both mentors and participants (raters and those rated) should be formally trained to improve the feedback process. Two, participants-both raters and those rated-should be significantly involved in 360-feedback planning and development efforts. Three, the 360-feedback process should be linked to hospital objectives. Four, the 360-feedback process should focus not only on interpersonal issues but departmental and organizational goals as well. First and foremost, our findings show that regardless of how popular a management development program may be, no technique for improving management and organizational effectiveness, including 360-feedback, will work unless properly designed and implemented.