It’s that time of year, the 360 degree feedback fiasco, intended to allow staff to provide constructive feedback for each other. Yet somehow, the ‘constructive’ part has been replaced with ‘vindictive’ in our company. It doesn’t help that our MD insists that it be anonymous, he believes that it allows people to be more honest with their feedback. More like, it’s a great way to stick the knife in or get your own back on the office idiots.
So that nobody would forget, the HR Manager had a rare innovative moment and instructed the IT team to work through the night in order to change the screensavers on every PC in the building. The following morning, on entering the open plan office, we were greeted with the 360 degree logo, fluorescent yellow on a puke green background, performing summersaults all over the place on each computer screen. Not a good look at 8am on a Monday morning after a few too many sherries over the weekend. There was a close-call moment of panic though, when one of the girls in my team complained of a sudden headache, knowing that she’s epileptic we had to hurry her from the building to find a dark corner to lie down in.
Then the results arrived and that’s when the fun really started, there were tears and tantrums and I suddenly became the most popular person in the department on account of every person in my team deciding that they must have five minutes with me to discuss their feedback.
First up was a girl, who my boss is forever saying to me ‘should do something about her ridiculous hair’. The girl was practically hysterical in the meeting due to one of her feedback comments being that ‘she isn’t taken seriously due to her exceptionally frizzy hair’. No guesses then as to who had written the comment I thought.
As I handed the girl tissues, I was careful to keep nodding in what I hoped was a compassionate way, all the while thinking how glad I was that my boss was taking such a keen interest in the personal development of my staff.
Next up was the parking space hogger, due to the length of time that he’s worked in the company he’s entitled to one of the car park spaces. He’d taken offence to, ‘isn’t very team-spirited due to him always taking the last pool parking space’. The culprit for this comment was a little trickier to work out as there are ten pool parking spaces. He was fuming though and swore that he would ‘find out who had written such a pathetic comment and would teach them a thing or two about team spirit’.
The HR budget was not completely wasted on the exercise however, as the frizzy haired girl arrived back to work after a few days sick leave, with poker straight hair and a very staid looking new outfit. Seemed that she’d managed to take the feedback seriously, I just hoped my boss would now take her seriously.