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Design a 360 Degree Feedback Program

Leverage multi-rater feedback to optimize employee development.

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  • Dr. Leanne Atwater, C.T. Bauer College of Business, University of Houston – Professor of Leadership & Organizational Behavior and author of extensive research papers on 360 degree feedback
  • Chelsea Hutton, HR Generalist, Microstrategy
  • Mari Iromoto, Consultant in Innovation & Leadership Development
  • Richard Lepsinger, President, OnPoint Consulting and author (with Antoinette Lucia) of The Art and Science of 360° Feedback – Second Edition
  • Jill Morrison, Senior HR Manager – North America, Microstrategy
  • Sue Mortlock, Head of Board Development, NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement
  • Dr. Maury Peiperl, International Institute for Management Development – Professor of Leadership & Strategic Change
  • Feedback can be plagued by the “garbage in, garbage out” phenomenon where feedback is vague and inaccurate and results in a development plan that is not representative of the employee.
  • Traditional performance reviews are often backwards looking and based on the opinion of only the manager.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • McLean & Company recommends that organizations make employee development the sole purpose of their 360 degree feedback program.

Impact and Result

  • 360 degree feedback bridges the divide by maintaining objectivity through formally defined competency-based ratings while providing increased opportunities for feedback from various members of the employee’s professional circle.
  • Evaluate if your organization has a culture of trust to ensure that the 360 degree program has a positive impact on employee’s development.
  • Provide sufficient training so that participants and reviewers understand the purpose, their role, and how to provide and interpret relevant feedback.
  • Create an employee development plan to apply feedback gathered. Repeat 360 degree assessments every 18-24 months to measure impact.

Research & Tools

1. Prepare for 360 degree feedback

Assess the organization’s readiness and determine the appropriate timing for launching the program.

2. Define the scope of the 360 degree feedback program

Establish the purpose and scope of the program.

3. Communicate and train employees on giving and receiving feedback

Communicate the program and train employees on giving and receiving effective feedback.

4. Collect 360 degree feedback

Use McLean & Company’s online 360 Degree Feedback Tool to collect feedback.

5. Interpret and use 360 degree feedback effectively

Ensure employees get the most out of their feedback.

Guided Implementations

This guided implementation is a seven call advisory process.

Guided Implementation #1 - Prepare for 360 degree feedback

Call #1 - Discuss your organization’s readiness and appropriately time the launch of the 360 degree feedback program.

Guided Implementation #2 - Define the scope of the 360 degree feedback program

Call #1 - Gain advice on getting executive buy-in for the program.
Call #2 - Validate your scoping document with a McLean & Company analyst.

Guided Implementation #3 - Communicate and train employees on giving and receiving feedback

Call #1 - Gain advice for communicating the 360 degree feedback program to employees.
Call #2 - Discuss your approach to training employees for participating in the program.

Guided Implementation #4 - Collect 360 degree feedback

Call #1 - Ensure that your program is set up correctly, according to your unique specifications and needs.

Guided Implementation #5 - Interpret and use 360 degree feedback effectively

Call #1 - Gain advice on how to interpret and apply 360 degree feedback.

Onsite Workshop

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Onsite workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 1: Set Program Purpose, Roles, and Participants

The Purpose

  • Determine the purpose of the 360 degree feedback program.
  • Select program participants.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Use McLean & Company’s framework to optimize the 360 degree feedback program.
  • Target your program for success.




Outline program roles.

  • Establish program purpose and roles.

Determine program purpose.

  • Establish a targeted development goal.

Select employees to be included in the program.

  • Confirm participants.

Module 2: Prepare to Launch and Communicate the Program

The Purpose

  • Identify the competencies for evaluation.
  • Ensure that all stakeholders are aware of the program.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Participants will understand how the program works and how to provide useful feedback.




Determine the competencies that you will assess as part of the program.

  • Clarify competencies that will be assessed.

Develop a high-level communications plan.

  • Develop a program communications plan.

Customize rater and ratee training decks.

  • Customize training decks to suit your organization.

Module 3: Prepare to Assist Employees in Getting the Most From Their 360 Feedback

The Purpose

  • Understand how to use McLean & Company’s 360 Degree Feedback Tool.
  • Ensure employees interpret and act on feedback.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Proper application of McLean & Company’s online 360 Degree Feedback Tool.




Review McLean & Company’s online 360 degree feedback tool.

  • Understand how to use the tool.

Empower employees to effectively interpret feedback.

  • Apply the feedback for future development.

Determine methods for acknowledging the participation of raters.

  • Design a process to ensure ratees and raters benefit from the 360 degree feedback process.