Does the annual performance review remind you of school days, when you dreaded receiving the report card? You’re not alone. Employees the world over have mixed emotions about the performance review. For, the manager seems inherently powerful during this crucial ritual. And it all boils down to the impressions he/she has about you.
Well, actually not. A performance review brings a chance to assess your work over the past year and set new goals for the year ahead. It’s a moment to analyze your growth vis-à-vis the organization. Given the potential, you need to approach it with preparation. That equips you to have a more meaningful conversation with your manager.
- Consider previous goals and achievements. What goals were set for you the last review season and how do you score on them? What progress have you made and what prevented you from completing them? As a talent development associate you might have been tasked with rolling out training programs every month. But without adequate funds to hire coaching experts. Or you may have made great strides towards one goal but at the cost of another. Do a self-assessment and make a list of discussion points for the review conversation.
- Find facts and statistics. Instead of three learning programs, you might have implemented only two. But if you can show the improvement in relevance of programs, you are on strong territory. Use statistics to support your stand – you might have done a survey on program quality, or the participation numbers might have gone up. Have these facts handy and you’ll be ready to answer questions that come your way.
- Identify room for improvement. Analyze your own strengths and weaknesses. Identify areas for improvement and potential goals you could work towards in the coming year. You could also list the support needed to achieve these goals. Armed with these inputs, you can better negotiate the conversation of goal setting.
- Chalk out your growth path. What are your long-term goals and how can you contribute to the organization’s growth? Consider these points carefully. Discuss them with your manager. This will ensure that review outcomes in terms of new responsibilities, designations or goals, are aligned with your own plans, and will help you grow along with the organization.
Well begun, they say, is half done. Begin preparing for your review a week or two in advance. Go to the meeting armed with information and facts about your progress. Remember, a review is a two-way conversation and preparation is your best bet to keep the dialogue constructive.