How Do I Select My 360 Sources?

The most important rule about selecting your sources for 360 feedback is that you make the final selection. In the end, if you are not ready and able to accept the feedback you get as valid and representative, it is useless to collect it. Since 360 feedback is usually merged from all your sources (either all together or in subgroups by level (up, down, across, outside), even one unacceptable person will give you the out to dismiss any piece of feedback since you will be able to attribute it to that one unacceptable source. You should talk with your coach, your boss or board, your HR professional, mentors, and others you trust to get ideas on sources. Consider their suggestions seriously and then work with your coach to select the most appropriate sources based on the following criteria:

People whose feedback you will accept as valid People who have first-hand experience with you in the areas on which you want feedback A good balance of people with whom you do well and those with whom you may have difficulties A good diversity of people regarding relevant characteristics (gender, age, tenure, experience level, level of authority, race and/or cultural background, style, etc.) People who can be trusted to maintain confidentiality about your 360 within your organization People who can and will be open, candid, and specific about what you do, situations in your organization, and how you might be able to improve your effectiveness and help your organization to achieve its objectives