1. The annual performance review is a measure of how secure your job is, and how much more (or less) you are going to make in the next year. The main thing to know about performance review is make sure you have an idea of your real measurable accomplishments in the past year. Next, you should also have a clear idea of the valuable things you are going to do in the following year.
2. This also means that, for your current year's performance review, you refer to your previous performance review and see where you did okay, or otherwise.
3. If this is your first year in the company, sit with your boss and get an idea of the things your performance was based on.
4. After you know what the company expects from you, it is also useful to know what your immediate boss expects from you.
5. If you have studied the company and the industry by now, also list the things that will be of matter in the coming years.
6. The Self Assessment
They want to learn about how you fared against the goals, not how good you were at the soft skills
They don't to hear about your 'great teamwork'. They want to learn whether you increased the number of clients by 20% as was promised in the goal. They want to measure you against numbers.
Perform regular self-assessments (every 30/60 days)
Helps you find out problems with your work before it is too late to fix.
Share a summary of your accomplishments of the year with the boss before the review
This is helpful in pushing your case in case the boss has to go through a lot of performance reviews. This pre-review summary makes your case fresh in the boss's mind.
Don't rate yourself too high, Don't be too modest either
If you keep giving yourself 110% for each criteria, they will think you to be out-of-touch or lacking self-awareness. You don't help with the 'false' modesty either. The boss is looking for actual and true numbers so he can arrive at an honest decision.
Be honest about areas where you need to improve
This also tells the boss about intentions to be better at some important aspect of the work, and you may have a helpful conversation later. But, don't do this, if you know the boss to to ill-tempered and vengeful.
Compare this year's performance review with previous years' reviews
This might tell you where you have been lagging most of the time, the long-term trends etc. Doing this also improves your writing as you give a historical context to the review- 'I have exceeded my client target three years in a row'
Finally, match the performance review criteria with your own career wish list and start planning for next year's evaluation early
Start the new year's 'good work' list, and remember to do the monthly review of your progress.
Recovering from a bad performance review
Accept the bad news with poise. Your emotions might make matter worse. Unfair or not, accept the review like a professional. Don't go all defensive, going into 'explaining mode'.
When you meet with boss, note down all that is being suggested for improvements. Ask for actual examples of your poor performance. Be clam in the meeting and say 'thank you' when it ends.
After you have understood all that you need to do to improve your work performance, start improving things, focusing exactly where it said on your review. Work hard. Become more valuable. And please, keep a record of all success (emails praising you, other compliments, ask people if you can see their praise in print) in your 'good work' folder- name a folder in your email account with that name.
Thank you for reading.
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