I’m pleased to continue sharing content with you from my associates and other guest experts. Here is the first from my associate advisor Kristin Hazzard:

“Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.” – Winston Churchill

Professional hockey teams and high-performing businesses have a lot in common:

Both have a vision for success and are aligned with goals and targets to achieve them. Both have high performing team members who have specific roles and skill sets which they execute proficiently, and both are structured in a specific hierarchy that helps drive performance and handle logistics.

The most successful teams also trust each other, communicate effectively, hold each other accountable, and push each other constantly. When it comes to delivering feedback and recalibrating for continual improvement, hockey is as good as it gets. It happens on a play-by-play basis and businesses can learn a lot from this type of frequency to gain powerful insights to improve.

One of the best tools we’ve found to deliver meaningful feedback for improved performance and growth is a 360 review.

360 Degree Review

A succinct, direct questionnaire provided to key executives, managers, peers, and direct reports, a 360 asks strategic questions about an employee’s strengths and opportunities for growth, and delivers qualitative and quantitative data about how other people view their performance –sometimes in contrast with how they view themselves. Blind spots are revealed, and insights emerge. It’s a transparent process that can elicit powerful changes in behaviours which directly correlates to improved results.

In hockey terms, it’s like watching a game tape of yourself with real-time feedback.

Annual performance reviews are not frequent enough to elicit powerful change in performance and behaviour. Used strategically, 360 reviews get the right feedback on the table, required to elevate the performance and capacity of employees, which ultimately boosts the strength of the team.

A long-time client has conducted quarterly 360 reviews with their executive team for the past seven years. This ‘game-tape’ ritual has become part of their culture – a natural rhythm to give each other honest feedback.

Our Unique Approach

Our approach to 360s is very different than the traditional methodologies because we don’t use 60-100 statistical questions that become pages of data and comparative charts. The 360s we administer use 8-12 powerful questions to focus on their alignment with the culture (core values), strengths as a leader, blind spots, and what they could do to be more effective as a leader.

After data is collated, we offer a more robust version by diving deeper and interviewing participants to explore themes that emerge, to gain the best insights and deliver the best recommendations.

If you haven’t experienced a 360, this may sound daunting or terrifying. But, just like an elite hockey team, giving direct, succinct and performance-based feedback is a natural process, critical to recalibrate and improve everyone’s performance, during and after a game.

The Challenge

  • How often do you provide feedback to members of your team (praise or redirect)?
  • Who on your team needs help recalibrating to achieve their goals?
  • Who would benefit from a 360-feedback assessment?

Reach out to us if you need help to provide feedback that improves performance, or to conduct an impactful 360 assessment for you and your team.

Kristin Hazzard, an Executive & Leadership Coach at Lawrence & Co. Growth Advisors, was an elite hockey player who competed at the national championship level and in the semi-professional Women’s Hockey League.