5 Tips For Your Next Performance Review

I can’t believe it’s December now!

Since it’s getting to the end of the year, I know some of you may have an annual performance review coming up.

So for today’s email, I will be sharing tips to get you prepared for your upcoming review.

If you know someone who might need these tips, feel free to forward this email along.

5 Tips For Your Upcoming Performance Review

For ease of reading, here are the main ideas and I will expand on each one below:

  1. Reflect on your achievements
  2. Identify areas for improvement
  3. What to do if you get negative feedback
  4. Discussing salary
  5. Setting goals

1. Reflect on Your Achievements

A lot of things can happen in the year.

Take the time to review all of your accomplishments since your last review. Highlight specific examples of your contributions, where you went above and beyond, and made a positive impact.

Even better if you can quantify your impact in metrics, but even if you received a “thank you” or “good job” from a colleague or manager, that is positive too.

I often recommend keeping a journal to document your contributions throughout the year.

This best practice will jog your memory during review time and also serves as a confidence booster when you look back on how much you did!

2. Identify Areas for Improvement (Growth Areas)

When I talk to people who are happy in their careers, they often mention they are growing and learning each day.

Are there areas where you can use some more practice and development in your skills? Come up with some ideas for how the company can help you develop to get there.

If you’re ready to take on new responsibility, think about how you would like to be challenged. Is there an opportunity for you to step up?

This is a chance for you to demonstrate your self-awareness and commitment to improvement.

3. What to do if you get Negative Feedback

Receiving negative feedback during a review can be challenging.

If you know you will be receiving negative feedback, you can see it as a potential area for growth. 

If you are given negative feedback, I want you to take a deep breath.

Seek to understand the perspective of where they’re coming from and avoid becoming defensive.

The goal is to get clarity on what the expectations are and how things can be improved for the future.

Ask for specific and clear examples of what your manager would like to see.

If you feel the feedback is unfair, share your perspective on the matter respectfully. Perhaps there are accomplishments that were not considered in the feedback and it would help to bring it to their attention.

Aim to focus the conversation on finding a solution.

Remember that receiving negative feedback is not a reflection of your worth as a person. 

4. Discussing Salary

Not all companies do a salary review with a performance review, but if you are looking for a salary increase, you will want to be prepared.

Do your research on the industry standards so you can make a request that aligns with your skills and expertise.

Make sure to highlight your achievements and contributions, and express your future aspirations and desire to continue growing with the company. 

Be prepared that your employer might not be able to meet your salary expectations immediately. Suggest a timeline for future discussions.

Even if a salary increase isn’t on the table right now, perhaps you can negotiate more vacation days or professional development budget.

Remember that discussing salary is a two-way conversation and it can take more than one meeting.

5. Setting Goals for the Future

Typically, a good performance discussion concludes with an action plan for the future.

You should be ending the meeting with a clear understanding of how your upcoming goals and development are aligned with the company’s goals.

Feedback is an ongoing process.

Make sure to regularly seek feedback on your progress and not just during formal review periods.

This feedback will allow you to adjust your goals and plans as needed.

Your Quote of the Week

“Your job is not just to do what your parents say, what your teachers say, what society says, but to figure out what your heart calling is and to be led by that.”

~ Oprah Winfrey

Your Reflection Question

What is one thing (big or small) that I am most proud of from this year?

Think about it, journal, share it with a friend.

If you would like, you are welcome to share your reflection with me and I am also happy to hold space for your thoughts.

I hope you gained something from today’s email.

See you next week with another topic on career/life, an interesting quote and a question for you to reflect on for the week.

Take care,

PS. If you think any part of this email will help someone you know, please feel free to forward and share it with them. The more, the merrier.