This study identified how an appreciative 360-degree leader survey enhanced the feedback process for leaders. The qualitative study was conducted at a 1500-member Protestant church in Virginia. The two senior-most leaders (pastor and executive associate pastor) were evaluated by 10 subordinates. Examination of the impact of the appreciative process on the implementation and use of survey results identified risks, benefits, and suggested interventions. The study found that the appreciative process generally enhanced subordinates' willingness to participate, although some concerns did arise. Pastors and subordinates stated they did not have sufficient time to absorb the feedback or to identify deliberate action steps. However, the process was described as thought-provoking, which enhanced the meaningfulness of the feedback. It was concluded that Appreciative Inquiry added value to the 360-degree feedback process because it provided subordinates with an easier forum for feedback as well as providing leaders with affirming feedback.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Research projects (MSOD); Appreciative inquiry; 360-degree feedback (Rating of employees); Leadership -- Study and teaching

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graziadio Business School



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Chesley, Julie;