It’s the end of the year. Soon, it will be the day of the Appraisal and Performance Review! At some point in the weeks to come, you will have a meeting with your boss to discuss your performance and areas where you can improve. In view of this, why not do a self-appraisal of your own? It’s beneficial to prepare for that meeting.
Self-appraisal opens up a conversation between the employee and the manager during the performance assessment meeting. This introspection forces the employee to re-evaluate goals, measure progress, and carefully consider areas for work and career advancement. This is an opportunity for employees to express themselves and evaluate their work during the period of promotion or feedback.
It also helps the employee to know where they are and how they are doing, including in relation to the company’s goals. Annual performance reviews are often carried out in the workplace, but these should be an ongoing process to fairly and accurately assess employees and create a culture of ongoing communication.
With your appraisal coming up, it is important to make sure you are prepared for the conversation. This way, you will be able to effectively demonstrate your strengths while also understanding areas you can improve. Think of this as an interview where you can further strengthen your position in the company now that you’ve had a year’s experience on the job.
Some things to think about before your appraisal:
1. What are the new strengths that you’ve developed over the year?
Make a list of what you are doing well at work, and what makes you great to work with. Determining what you are good at will help set the tone for the conversation with your manager. You will be able to demonstrate that you are aware of your strengths while also engaging in a constructive dialogue. You will also learn how your actions affected others positively or negatively. In this sense, you must have been a person open to constructive criticism.
2. How well have you done the work that’s given to you?
Tracking yourself and collecting data about your own performance can really help. In this case, try to keep a journal so you can remember. This way, you’ll be able to say things that really count like, “My research enabled an increase in production by 25%”, instead of saying, “Remember last time I did the calculation for the sales increase? I also work hard what?”
3. What does your employer think of your work?
Well, we need to remind employers of our plus points and superpowers because they won’t remember them easily. Make it your job to remind them in a systematic way of your accomplishments over the past year. If this can be done, in point form, it will be easier.
4. How much have you matured as an employee and as a person?
This is where taking responsibility and making commitments come in. Unfortunately, most of us remember the negatives more than the positives. Taking responsibility for the negatives, mistakes and wrong decisions and a commitment to improve for the coming year shows that you’ve grown.
5. Has this job broadened your horizons?
You can highlight what you have learnt and how they have shaped your thinking and how you made decisions as a result. For example, if you were a marketing assistant, you learnt that short term planning is the norm for any marketing campaign, but the long term plan is always the final goal. You learnt to deal with the stress of quick and urgent work as part and parcel of your job function but still managed to come up with a sustainable plan for a better result. Ultimately, you became a team player to benefit the entire team. Can you articulate that you understand how the department actually functions and what are their yearly goals?
Be honest and upfront
The first and most important step to successfully communicate with your boss is to be honest and upfront. Try your best to show your boss what you think you could be doing better and put together a list of goals that you would like to accomplish. Showing what you want to achieve as well as what you want to start doing better will help them better understand your perspective and how they can help you succeed. It is also imperative to reiterate the details of the instructions that you have received from your boss so that they know that you are committed to the goals they laid out.
So please remember, this meeting is to find ways to help each other and map a way of improvement to go forward, not to find your fault and mark you out for something bad.
The Benefits of a Self-Appraisal
Some may think it’s difficult to appraise oneself. This is because others often see things differently than we do. We also often see things in the present, and others might see them in the past or the future. This often leads to unpleasant feelings such as anger, guilt, depression, and fear. A way to lessen these feelings is to find something good in what we see and always stay positive.
Remember the job description when you applied for this job? How many of them were you able to fulfil? Those are still the basic KPIs that you agreed to. There’s a big chance you were given extra tasks in the past year. Were you able to fulfill those as well?
Even if we can’t find anything that we think we did right, we can think of something we did that we could do better and then work on it in the next situation. Again, this is what the appraisal is for, to help both parties, and not the management giving up on the staff. If we do this, we won’t feel so bad and will be able to plan for progress. So go ahead and craft that self-appraisal that highlights your accomplishments and strengths. You can show what an asset you are to the company.
If these insights are helpful, do reach out to any of our career counselors for a career plan just for you!