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How To Rock Your Work Review

Performance Review

The month of June has well and truly kicked off, and that means performance review season is right around the corner. For most, this is the opportunity to pitch for a well-deserved promotion or increment. But there are some of us who dread the tediousness of a self-appraisal, the awkwardness of publicly patting ourselves on the back and the discomfort of being told how we could do better.

Like any other process, a performance review becomes less intimidating once you understand how it works and what you need to do to make it work for you. To guide you along, here are woman with drive’s seven strategies for aceing that review.

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1. Be bold about your wins.Whether it was completing a big project well ahead of time, smashing a target or launching an initiative, talk about it with pride rather than mention it in passing. Include facts and figures showing how you contributed to the company’s bottom line, any work you did outside your normal responsibilities and compliments from your co-workers or clients. This is not the time for self-consciousness or modesty. You have earned the right to talk about your victories, so do that!

2. Talk about your learnings.How have you stretched yourself and grown in the past year? Describe how you enhanced your existing skills and the new skills your mastered. Then – and this is very important – talk about how your skills boosted your performance and supported the goals of your department and organisation.

3. Acknowledge your mistakes without harping on them. Being too blunt about your shortcomings may backfire on you in the future. So instead of highlighting those mistakes as regrettable stuff-ups, focus on your areas of improvement. Talk about one or two aspects of your role that you need to strengthen, how you plan to do that and if you need any support.

4. Think about your behaviour. A performance review is not all about knowledge and skills. It is also about your behaviour and how you are applying your knowledge. This includes people management, time management and project management skills. When you do your self-appraisal, think about the little habits that are tripping you up. Then in your performance review session, seek your manager’s advice for developing new habits.

5. Do not rush through your self-appraisal. Your manager will know if you completed your self-appraisal five minutes before your session, and that could have impact your review. Besides, why would you shortchange yourself after all the hard work you have done over the past year? Do yourself justice by starting your self-appraisal a few days before your performance review so you have enough time to properly think things through.

6. Keep your professional hat on throughout the review. You and your manager are different people with different perspectives. So do not get defensive when his or her evaluation of your performance differs from your self-appraisal. Rather than get upset or protest, ask for specific factors that influenced his or her evaluation. Not only will this lead to an insightful discussion but will also indicate that you are capable of receiving feedback well.

7. Prepare a career wish list. Think about what you want to achieve over the next year and prioritise two or three areas of learning that will help you get there. Share these ambitions with your manager and get his or her input on how you can reach those goals.


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