It’s the end of another calendar year which could mean performance reviews for many people. Throughout my career, I have had many different performance reviews, some good and some not so good. I have even facilitated many performance reviews, also some good and some not so good. One of my leaders that I greatly admired once told me that people should not be surprised at their performance review. We need to continuously provide feedback. But now it is the time where we are getting our annual feedback, so whether or not you have been getting feedback on a more regular basis prepare for this one!
You have written your goals and have been measured against them. While some companies are discontinuing with these crazy complex things (http://qz.com/428813/ge-performance-review-strategy-shift/), they are still around in many businesses. So how can you prepare?
- First, go in to the meeting with a positive attitude.
- Be prepared to ask about how you can demonstrate better performance for the upcoming year.
- Ask for details for any generalities provided.
- Be gracious for the opportunity to have your position and work in your company.
- Finally, talk about your strategy for your career development.
Once you get to the performance review stage, your score, status, and rank have been vetted and determined by multiple layers of management, including HR. You may have an opportunity to modify your overall review, which can be permanently stored in your employee profile, but having drastic changes are unlikely. I have had my rating improved by hundredths of a point, that didn’t really change much. Employees of mine have also successfully modified terminology in their review write ups.
The best way to set yourself up for success is the strategize right now for the upcoming year. Have you established yourself as a respectable expert in your field? Does your leadership and your leadership’s leaders know who you are? Have you scheduled quarterly meetings with different leaders for mentoring (and networking) opportunities? Do you take on the higher profile projects and finish them on time and within budget? Are you making it easy to transition off the smaller jobs that can handed off to help develop newer employees so you can take the better projects?
Give yourself the gift of setting yourself up for success for this upcoming year. Create a strategy and follow through to grow your professional network and expand your reputation as an expert in your field.