Letter to the Editor

Is anyone surprised Commissioners Gary Roark and Jeff Rose have never heard of employees providing anonymous feedback to their boss? Multi-source or 360-degree feedback is a process where employees (and managers) receive confidential, anonymous feedback from the people who work around them. This typically includes the employee’s manager, peers, and those who directly report to the individual.

This type of feedback was first used by the German military during WWII. In the 1950s American businesses began using the process and by the 1990s the practice was well ingrained in human resources departments across America. Multiple studies have shown this type of feedback improves employee performance and, ultimately, overall organizational performance.

Referencing his time in the NC National Guard, Roark said, “I don’t think it would be fair regardless who the manager is for the department heads to evaluate their superior. We never had a subordinate to rate their superior. You don’t go up and tell the company commander they’re doing a bad job. That’s the problem I have with evaluating the county manager.”

Here’s a newsflash for Roark. The U.S. Army requires 360-degree feedback for its lieutenant colonel and colonel commanders because it helps facilitate the development of key leaders.

Other than Roark, Rose and maybe Commissioner Perry, nobody in Ashe County is more in need of tools to facilitate their leadership development than County Manger Sam Yearick.

Commissioners Rhodes and Sands should be commended for this initiative which may be the single smartest thing I’ve seen the commissioners do in the years I’ve lived in the county.

Ken Lynn, Fleetwood

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