Performance reviews are an opportunity to assess your progress and potentially take on more responsibility if you’re granted a promotion. Therefore, it’s important to know how to both critically evaluate yourself and ensure your personal development is recognised.
While usually conducted every 12 months, different companies establish their own review systems and there may be a company-wide review period. Learn your company’s policy so you have adequate time to prepare and follow our five tips to make sure you ace your next performance review.
Being critical of yourself can be tough, especially when you’re aiming for a pay rise or to advance in your company. Overconfidence can make you appear brash – such as taking credit for projects that were team efforts, or failing to acknowledge setbacks. Likewise, if you’ve made great strides since your last review and taken on more responsibility, you want to highlight them and be recognised for your work.
Self-assessment is all about keeping a level head when looking back at your own work. Your company may ask you to complete a self-assessment form ahead of your actual review, though if not, it’s still important to take time for personal reflection. Refer to the expected skills and responsibilities listed in your job description to find where you excel and where you need more support.
Gather Your Own Feedback
How you work with your colleagues is a key part of any performance review. Great work in isolation is always commendable, but great work as part of a team shows communication, delegation, and leadership skills that employers consider carefully when deciding on raises and promotions.
Gathering your own feedback will show you’re proactive about improving your skills and give you a new perspective on your work, meaning you can more accurately assess how well you’ve done. A few weeks ahead of your review, ask a handful of colleagues for some quick feedback. They may be busy with their own work (and possibly prepping for their own reviews) so make it easy for them by asking them to highlight one area you succeed in and another to improve on.
Prepare Some Examples
Reviews normally cover your last 12 months in a position, though it’s all too easy to focus on recent work as it’s fresh in your mind. You’ll only be able to see how you’ve progressed in your role by comparing your current performance to how things were at your previous review. You may even be surprised just how far you’ve come!
Keep a broad view over the last year and note down the major projects you’ve been part of so you can refer to them during the review. If you need details such as statistical results, your company should keep internal case studies or records of each campaign’s success for reporting purposes – ask to see these as part of your review preparation.
Be Critical, But Constructive
Acknowledging your weaknesses isn’t a bad thing. You may think a performance review is a daunting experience and you should hold back from pointing out any faults, but remember that it is a review. That means taking a balanced approach to work and finding ways to improve.
If you struggle with a certain task or want to nurture skills in a specialist area, come to your review with some potential solutions. This can be internal training from senior staff or external courses your company could send you on. As long as the suggestions will improve the way you work, your manager will likely try their best to arrange the training.
Set Future Goals
A great review not only evaluates your past performance but also puts you in prime position to start improving right away. To do this, try to think of what you’d like to achieve over the coming year and how you’re going to approach these goals. This will show your manager that you have a desire to progress with clear milestones in mind.
Your goals can be anything from being promoted to simply learning a new tool or piece of software. Whatever you’d like to achieve, discuss it with your manager to make sure your personal growth can be nurtured by the company and will increase your value as an employee. Once you agree on those goals, you can focus on achieving them!
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