What Are Your 360 Degree Resolutions?

Asking your friends for new year’s resolutions helps you to commit to them, and it’s very similar to 360 Degree Dinner.

I read an interesting article on the Wall Street Journal website about outsourcing your new year’s resolutions to your best friends or significant other. After all, who knows better how you can improve, and investigate your blind spots, than your peers and loved ones?

Within two hours after reading the article I put the idea into practice during a post-Christmas dinner with my friends. Here’s what they came up with:

  1. I should mind my health. I travel every week, and I must take care not to forget that a healthy brain needs a healthy body.
  2. I should not forget the here and now. I’m always making plans for the future, but some things should be enjoyed in the present.
  3. I should de-focus. I’m quite good at focusing on my projects and top priorities. But life doesn’t happen in Remember the Milk.

I thank Femke, Raoul and Erik for addressing my weaknesses, and doing so in a most gentle way. To be honest, there were no real surprises for me. But strangely enough, now that my friends, and not me, have pointed out and discussed my little problems, I feel more committed to try and solve them. (Not in the least because we’ve promised each other to follow up in a few months…)

Asking your friends for new year’s resolutions is very similar to 360 Degree Dinner, a very useful Agile leadership practice that I often discuss in my Management 3.0 courses.

What feedback did you receive in the form of 360 Degree Resolutions?

(picture by Chris)

(Jurgen Appelo is author of Management 3.0, a best-selling management book for Agile developers. It has a picture of a monster in it.)

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