One of the most common ways to evaluate, manage, and improve employee performance is through the use of a performance review – but self-evaluation should have its place, too. Managers consider what they’ve seen you do since the last review and use that to guide the latest one-on-one meeting. This puts a lot of pressure on management to think and reflect without bias on the contributions of each worker.
As someone working at any organization, a performance review gives a glimpse into what managers see when they view your work. However, it can go far beyond that. In many cases, everything from promotions to pay raises is tied to these reviews. When a worker isn’t involved in this process, it can make it more frightening and lead to anxiety.
One of the ways to take part in the performance review is through self-evaluation. This can give you something to focus on and think about as you wait for your performance review. But there’s another benefit to creating a document about your own achievements. You can remind the manager about what you’ve done and how it’s helped the company succeed.
In some companies, self-evaluations are mandatory. Many see them as something they are required to do without considering the benefits that activity may offer. When you realize that this evaluation can prove you’re an asset, you’ll likely be more inclined to dive deep and be serious while filling it out.
Whether you are required to do a self-evaluation, or you want to do so for your own reasons, there are ways to ensure it turns out great. We’ll share some tips for showing how much you’re worth so you could be the next in line for moving up or being paid more due to how much you offer to the organization.
The Many Reasons to Create a Self-Evaluation
As you already realize, self-evaluations let you take destiny into your own hands. You get the chance to write down your achievements to share with a superior. However, this is not the only reason to consider writing down your accomplishments. Take a look at some of the other reasons below.
Show Your Own Value
While writing a self-evaluation, you have the chance to show the value you add to the business. It also allows you to identify places where you can grow and expand your knowledge. As you weave in examples and metrics from the last six months to a year, you start to create a picture of the clear ways you bring value to your team and the company as a whole.
In addition to painting a picture as to why you are an asset, you can also look at places you might need to improve. This gives you the ability to advocate for what you need as you expand your skills and build upon the knowledge you already have.
Another reason a self-evaluation can be useful is that it provides a way to prepare for a conversation with your manager. In many cases, the words you write down will take up a large part of that talk. It gives you a higher degree of control over the situation and leaves you without the worry that the entire process will be a surprise that you aren’t prepared for.
While you go over the notes you’ve taken over the months, you’ll also start to remember things you might have forgotten. You can see what you’ve done well and where you can improve to be an even larger part of the company’s success. Having that laid out in front of you will make it easier to talk about both your weaknesses and successes without concern you may be caught off-guard.
Serve as a Reminder
Sure, writing a self-evaluation might not be the most exciting thing you do at work. However, it can serve as a reminder to management about how much you do to help the organization. The truth is managers have a lot to deal with on a daily basis. Remembering everything you’ve done would be nice, but it’s not realistic. Managers are looking out for several people, so things are sure to be forgotten. After all, the day-to-day operations are also left to management, so they have a lot to work on.
Assuming you have a performance review every year, that’s 12 months of information to retain. Memories can fade, and focus may be put on the things that are happening now. When you have a self-evaluation ready at the meeting, you can use it as a reminder of all the things you have done. It serves as a way to prove all the contributions you’ve made to the business.
The Most Important Writing Tips for a Self-Evaluation
It can be challenging to know how to write down achievements that we’ve made ourselves. At best, it can feel a bit like conceit, and at worst, it can be extremely uncomfortable. Since you want to ensure your self-evaluation turns out the best it can, we want to share a few of the best writing tips to ensure you step into the manager’s office fully prepared.
Track Your Achievements
Sometimes, when you sit down to write, you’ll notice that the only achievements that come to mind are the most recent ones. Things that occurred several months ago can easily slip from the mind. Even if you remember them, the details may have faded away. This is precisely why it’s important to track your achievements throughout the year.
If it’s October and you’re trying to remember the details of a deal from February, it’s going to be a challenge even for those with excellent memory retention. Instead, write down a short but comprehensive entry about the things you do as you do them. This will make it easier to remember what happened to complete a self-evaluation. Use a phone app, a word processing program, or even a notebook to keep important information for the future.
Share Weaknesses in the Right Light
You’ll want to share plenty of information regarding what you have accomplished throughout the year. However, to make a well-rounded self-evaluation, you also need to consider areas of improvement. Think about some of the places where you could grow. You’re going to want to add them to the document you’re making but in a very specific way.
Instead of being negative about what you may not be skilled at, use positive wording instead. Rather than straight up saying you’re bad at something, frame it as something you want to become better at. Talk about how you want to focus on the weakness to be more well-rounded. It will come off better and show you have truly thought things through.
Add in Some Numbers
Always include numbers in your self-evaluation when possible. It gives you a way to show what you’ve done and the results that came from that. Managers can use this to put things into perspective so add numbers to achievements whenever possible. Not only can metrics show your successes and support claims, but they can be used to advocate for things like raises.
Having measurements in your self-evaluation can highlight what you are capable of. Make sure you add these things if you plan to negotiate while in the office. Proving that you have a huge effect on your team and the company may be what gets you the concessions you need to stay satisfied and engaged in the workplace.
The onboarding process for a new employee might include goal setting. The reason for this is that it offers an easy way to evaluate how you are doing as you complete projects. However, even when goals aren’t a requirement, it’s useful to create them. Your own goals can be woven into the self-evaluation to give insight into how much you’ve done since the last performance review.
Saying you have a set of skills is one thing. Proving that you use these skills to help the company is quite another. For instance, saying you’re a people person, and that has helped you with customers is vague, and you provide no evidence of what you can do. Specify how you’ve been able to achieve things through what you put into your work.
The actual way these examples are worded will vary for everyone. That’s why you need to think deeply about what lets you excel. Keep in mind that in many cases, the answer is a combination of factors. If you aren’t sure what to include in the self-evaluation, look at your skills and how you use them. Choose an example that shows your best qualities and how you’re an asset.
Many people struggle when it comes time to write a self-evaluation for their next performance review. However, you can look at it in a new way to make the process easier. Think about self-evaluation as a way to remind your superiors about how much you offer a company. Support yourself with figures and facts while recounting your many successes. Add solution-oriented language about how you’d like to grow in the future.