Performance review. It’s one of the mileage marks for a working year – like open enrollment or Girl Scouts time. Anticipating an upcoming evaluation can be a stressor. It can be difficult to sit there as your work history is being picked up. Especially in this economy, any defect is a potential blow to you if downsizing occurs.
But a performance review can also be a great opportunity to strengthen your position and shape your role within the company – if you take the time to prepare.
Check out our five tips for getting the most out of the following performance review.
1. Don’t ignore d
Avoid nasty surprises while reviewing your performance by looking for feedback throughout the year. Don’t assume there’s no good news when it comes to how you’re doing at work. Schedule a few minutes periodically to connect with your boss. Give them a case report and ask if you are working in the right direction. Use comments as a guide to address shortcomings and build on successes.
2. Open your mind
Even if you’ve been obedient about getting feedback throughout the year, you’ll likely still hear some criticism while evaluating your performance. Open your mind to criticism. Don’t be defensive. Don’t dismiss it out of control. Accept criticism and use it to improve.
3. Be ready to prove your worth
Before your performance review, make a summary of the goals and accomplishments you’ve achieved over the past year (you’ll likely need this information for a self-assessment as well). These are concrete examples of your value to the company. The goal is to show that you exceeded expectations—exceeded expectations—rather than simply completing required work tasks satisfactorily.
4. Show that you have grown
Be prepared to show how you dealt with weaknesses that came to your attention during previous performance reviews. Show that you respond to criticism and improve. For example, if your boss told you last year that you didn’t show leadership skills, provide some examples of how you’ve taken on leadership roles successfully since then.
5. Make a plan for the future
A performance appraisal is a great opportunity to participate in the development of your role in the company. Come prepared with a list of goals to pursue and skills you’d like to develop over the next year. If you have legitimate challenges in meeting certain performance expectations, be upfront about that and have a plan for how you will meet the expectations in the future (eg more training in a specific area).
Your next performance review doesn’t have to be stressful. With a little preparation, you can make the most of this meeting with your boss and come up with a solid plan for career growth!
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.
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