Performance appraisals are necessary to ensure you know your expectations as an employee, and to learn how your employer views your performance. They are also vital to ensure that your supervisor understandsyour career development goals and contributions to the organization.
With the right amount of preparation, you can increase your chances of a successful and smooth performance review conversation. Here are some tips on how to prepare for a performance review:
If you’re tempted to brush off your performance review, reconsider. Your performance review typically remains in your employment file for at least as long as you’re employed with the organization, and it can also be used as a legal document if the need arises. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to put adequate time and effort into your review ahead of time to support your career development and employment. Some options to help you prepare include:
Your manager generally isn’t in the loop on all that you do or accomplish, so it’s up to you to make sure they know. Incorporate all your work accomplishments into your performance review discussion to highlight your value to the company. Be sure to include the action or task, as well as the outcome. In cases where you can provide quantifiable data, do so, as it provides a more specific and detailed account of your achievements.
An essential component of your performance review is goal setting. Where your manager might have some goals for you, you also want to go in with a list of goals to show your initiative and desire to grow and contribute as an employee. Consider the SMART goal system, so you can provide realistic and measurable goals, as well as how you’ll know you’ve been successful in achieving them. Some career goals examples for performance reviews include:
Asking performance review questions shows that you’re listening and invested in the conversation. Follow-up questions to feedback also provide you with clarity when needed. Here are six powerful questions to ask in your performance review:
Though a vital aspect of the process, the inevitable performance review areas of improvement are generally the least favorite for all employees. To help the feedback go down a bit easier, mentally prepare yourself ahead of time to be open and receptive to the constructive feedback you receive. No one is perfect, and we all have room for improvement. Receiving another’s perspective on how we can improve allows us to grow and develop as people and employees.
When sharing your goals with your manager, also share the support you’ll likely need to achieve those goals. Doing so highlights your ability to problem-solve, analyze, be a team player, be willing to ask for help, and more.
The performance review period is a time when many employees approach the subject of a raise. To do so, be sure you understand how your organization’s review process ties to salary increases so you’re equipped with the proper knowledge to broach the subject. From there:
If you don’t get the raise you desire during the communication, ask when you can reasonably expect your next increase or broach the conversation again.
For additional on-the-job tips and career advice, visit our Job Seeker Resource Center.