The UQ Leadership Survey is a 360-degree feedback tool that supports leaders' development.

If a leader nominates you as a respondent for their survey, you’ll receive an automated email invitation from the survey system. It will include:

  • your unique survey link (it’s specific to you, so don’t forward it to anyone else)
  • instructions for completing the survey
  • the closing date for the survey.

The leader who is being rated may also contact you personally.

You will also receive reminder emails from the survey system until you complete the survey or it closes.

Why you’ve been invited

The leader who nominated you has identified you as a person whose perspective and feedback they would value.

It’s important for leaders to understand:

  • the impact of their behaviour on other people
  • how others perceive their behaviour, strengths and development needs.

The UQ Leadership Survey is a 360-degree feedback tool that gathers perspectives from colleagues on all sides of a designated person. That includes their manager, direct reports, peers and colleagues, and sometimes other collaborators or clients.

Read about the UQ Leadership Survey for more information about 360-degree feedback and what the survey measures.

Participation is voluntary

You don’t have to participate in the survey, even if you’re invited.

If you receive an invitation to complete a survey that you do not feel comfortable participating in, you can choose to:

  • let the person know that you would prefer not to participate
  • simply not respond
  • contact the survey organiser to discuss your situation.

Many people are invited to complete a survey, and the person being rated will not know who has responded or not.

Anonymity

Your feedback will be anonymous unless you are the manager or supervisor of the person being rated. Read about the UQ Leadership Survey for more information about anonymity, reporting and how your responses are used.

Completing the survey

Access the survey by clicking the unique survey link in your invitation email and following the instructions.

It generally takes about 15 minutes to complete the survey. You can complete it over multiple sessions if you like. You’ll generally have 2 weeks before the survey closes.

You must answer all questions and reach the finish page to have your responses included in the overall results. If you don’t feel able to answer a particular question, select ‘Not Applicable/Cannot Say’.

Providing constructive feedback

The most important thing you can do is to be as honest and constructive as possible in your responses. The person undertaking this survey is looking for an opportunity to improve, and good feedback is crucial so they can determine how best to do that.

Here are some tips to help ensure that your feedback offers value to the person who’s receiving it:

Try to be objective

Focus on behaviour, not personality. We don’t always get along with everybody. Try to set aside your personal like or dislike of the person and consider what they actually do when they’re demonstrating leadership.

Think of examples

If you’re not sure how to answer a question (or even if you are), try to think of a few examples that demonstrate the capability (or lack of), or back up the rating you think they deserve.

Look at each item individually

Consider it separately from other items – each question is designed to measure a separate aspect of a capability.

Use the whole scale

Nobody is perfect – everybody will have some strengths and some areas for development, so help them to discover what they are by being honest.

Select 'not applicable/cannot say' when it’s appropriate

If you feel that you are unable to answer a question, use the 'Not Applicable/Cannot Say' option. This response also provides useful information to the leader, as it may mean they need to make some aspects of their behaviour more visible.

Be constructive in your written feedback

Ensure your comments are respectful and constructive. Offer people something that they can work on and build from, or a suggestion for behaviour that would be more effective.

Overcoming biases

Often we display subtle biases in our responses to surveys. The most effective way to overcome these tendencies is to be aware of them. Here are the most common biases in feedback and suggestions to overcome them.

Halo effect

Halo effect occurs when:

  • a good characteristic (like being friendly) leads to rating high on other behaviours
  • a negative characteristic (such being overly abrupt), leads to lower ratings on other behaviours.

This limits the recipient’s opportunity to learn from the feedback and understand their impact on others. Instead, try to think about each question specifically, including some examples that support your intended rating.

Recency effect

Recency effect occurs because the most recent instances of behaviour come more easily to mind, so we weight them more heavily in our responses.

Try to think about your overall experience of the person (say, over the past 6 to 12 months) rather than just the most recent instances.

Central tendency bias

Central tendency bias occurs when people tend to rate all behaviours as ‘average’, or close to. This makes it difficult for the feedback receiver to distinguish between strengths and identify areas in need of development.

To overcome this tendency, look at the descriptions on each point of the scale: do you slightly disagree, or do you strongly agree?

The survey uses a response scale with no ‘mid-point’ to help you provide more clear and usable feedback. Read about the UQ Leadership Survey for more information about the survey design.

Unconscious bias

Unconscious bias occurs when we unconsciously rate some people more positively than others because of their personal characteristics (for example, gender, culture, sexuality, height or attractiveness).

Everybody has some unconscious biases, but it’s important to try to overcome these when you provide feedback. To do so, try to understand:

  • where your unconscious biases might come from
  • how they might affect your assumptions and your day-to-day interactions with others.

How your responses are used

The leader undertaking the survey will receive a report summarising the responses. Responses within each category are combined, and the report doesn’t identify who gave which responses (although managers and supervisors may be identifiable). The report is used to help the leader develop an action plan to improve their leadership skills.

Read about the UQ Leadership Survey for more information about anonymity, reporting and how your responses are used.

Questions

If you have questions about the survey process or how to respond to the survey, contact UQ Leadership.