With the change in the calendar year, the humongous task of filling in your performance appraisal sheets begin. For most of us this comes with anxiety and trepidation. If you are among those few who get excited by this, well I must say you have it sorted ?!
Have you ever wondered why this is so? Isn’t a performance appraisal just a culmination of things that you have done over the year and hence it should be a cakewalk and yet we are often filled with a sense of anxiety over this. This has led me to list out few things that you can do to ensure that this important and critical aspect of your performance appraisal is smoother.
- Understanding the purpose
Before you set into the Performance Appraisal, it is essential to completely understand the objective of this process especially if you are a fresher and this is your first time. The main purpose of the Performance Appraisal is to discuss and share the employees progress and performance in the organisation. Hence as an employee it is essential that you are aware of your Key Performance Indicators or Key area of results or the objectives which you need to achieve from the project (work) perspective, which you may have agreed to and signed at the beginning of the year. This works as a yardstick to measure your performance. One of the other important aspects is also personal development and growth among others.
Preparation is the key factor in ensuring that the anxiety around this is minimized. Many a times when we sit to list our achievements, we tend to forget what we did 6 months ago, hence a proper documentation of your achievement and progress over the year should be maintained by you. Not only that, but a periodic discussion with your manager at regular intervals is a must to ensure that you are in the right track. Since this is about your performance and your development, I would suggest that these discussions should be initiated by you in case you do not have a formal process in place already.
- Correct mindset
What do you understand by a correct mindset?
Well, what I mean here is how do you view this process? Do you just see this just as a medium which translates into that extra money in terms of a hike, or do you also see this as an opportunity for both personal and professional growth? Remember, this is the perfect time when your manager will be giving you 100% attention and will concentrate only on you. So, use this time not only to share and receive feedback but also to discuss your future in the company. Also, being very open to feedback is most important. When we are faced with a negative information about ourselves, we often tend to defend. Irrespective of the feedback being negative (fair or unfair) just listen in and tell your manager you will take time to think about it. Then on a different day go for a follow-up. if you feel that the feedback given to you was missing some facts.
A SWOT analysis can also be a handy tool whereby we can appraise ourselves against our Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
- Set Goals
This whole process is not only designed to assess your previous year professional performance, but this is an opportunity to set next year goals for your growth professionally within the organisation as well as seek support for personal development. Having a clearly identifiable goals will help you develop them which can further help in setting the stage in your future career not only within the organisation but make you ready for any organisation.
Last but not the least, setting a personal standard and goals for yourself and doing a continuous self-appraisal will not only help in overcoming that anxiety over this process but will keep you committed and focused on your growth and development both in the professional and personal sphere!