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Performance Appraisal Discussions: Do's and Dont's

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Jun 6, 2011- Appraisals! Appraisals are the time when when employees look forward to a raise in their salaries as well as their position and responsibilities. This is the time when an employee's performance is reviewed, his achievements or failure to deliver, his nature, his team bonding, punctuality and discipline are all taken into consideration. For bosses, this is the time to remind you again for all the times you failed to deliver or you have succeeded. It all depends on your performance in the past months to decide your salary and position. Appraisal cycles differ from organisation to organisation. Most have six-monthly or annual reviews. The important fact is that appraisals are as much about your future performance as well as about your past performance.

To know in details about appraisal, check out our article What is Performance Appraisal?

Your performance appraisal form will cover the following issues:
  • Key accomplishments in the past few months as well your previous review month.
  • What steps you have taken for team enrichment and benefit?
  • What new have you done?
  • What are the factors leading to your achievements?
  • What are the drawbacks of your performance?
  • What steps you have taken towards self-development?
  • What are your future career aspirations?
  • Training and self-development needs
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performance appraisal discussion
Performance Appraisal Discusssion

Do's and Dont's in Appraisal Meetings You can use the appraisal discussion with your boss to chart the path to where you wish to go in life. Here's how!

Do's: What you need to discuss with your boss
Past performance: Go through your past performance and analyze the areas where you excelled. Don't brag about your achievements, but yes, you have to mention them in your discussion. Don't get disheartened by criticisms that might come your way. Be graceful in admitting where you went wrong and seek advise from your boss on how to proceed henceforth.

Increased job responsibilities: If you want to grow, it is better you take up more work responsibilities. If you cannot do more than what you have shown so far, you are ensuring yourself as well as your company that you are satisfied with the old set of tasks. Even if you are not handed over higher responsibilities immediately, show your keen desire to contribute to your company's growth which will not go unnoticed. So, keep subtly showing your eagerness to grow and remember to work harder to prove that you can always take on additional work without much pressure.

Expectations from your boss: Be clear in letting your boss know the areas where you are an expert and areas where you need training or guidance or his support. Keep your manager in confidence.

Areas of initiatives: Well, if all you want to do is follow others, then there are little chances of you becoming the leader. Prove that you are capable of initiating and leading, and you will get a chance to shine. Get more involved. Don your thinking cap and reach out for innovative ideas to help your company move closer to its goals.

Suggest frequent review meetings: You can also work towards monthly or quarterly review cycles along with the regular appraisals. These will help you to remain in touch with your key result areas (KRAs) and prepare you to achieve them sooner than later. If you keep a track month-on-month, your boss will be happy that you are as keen on tracking your progress.

What NOT to do
Do not point out your boss' shortcomings This is a career-limiting move (CLM). Remember its your performance appraisal and not his. Therefore, always resist yourself to speak out the truth even if your boss has certain shortcomings which are coming in your way to growth. Rather mention the areas where you need his cooperation. Identify and seek his thoughts and ideas on how the two of you can work better together.

Do not mention your disappointment at your work responsibilities in the previous review cycle: If you were so let down at the monotonous tasks handed over to you, you should not have waited so long . You could have mentioned this in the very beginning when you had felt the tasks were not challenging enough and you could have done much better. A performance review meeting is not the ideal time to mention this!

Do not blame others for your non-performance: Whatever you do, do not play the blame game. This reflects a very bad impression and also shows your pettiness. Accept your mistakes gracefully in the meeting. Learn from them, and move on and rectify those mistakes. Your boss will respect you more if you are open to get rid of your shortcomings.

Do not lose your patience at criticism: Remember to maintain a positive frame of mind all through the discussions. Even if your boss criticize you, put forth your point of view firmly but politely. You never know if your boss is testing you for resilience, reaction under pressure, and patience that you will need at the next level.

Note : The article has inputs from another article Performance appraisal: Dos and don'ts from rediff.com.