A new year can often feel like a fresh start in the workplace. That is after you’ve completed your annual review with your employer! This practice has become more prevalent in businesses throughout the world. These reviews typically serve two functions. They are a form of validation regarding the work you have been completing. They can provide valuable insights for your employer to get a better feel for your skills and abilities.
Annual reviews should serve as a tool
As you get closer to your own review, you may begin experiencing feelings of added pressure or stress. You are not alone in this, as more and more people report similar feelings around review season each year. It’s important to remember to relax. And that ultimately, these reviews are a tool for both you and your employer.
Chances are, there is room for improvement, even with the best workers. Maybe you’re not being challenged regularly enough and your hours in the workplace could be going farther. Maybe management has spread you too thin, and a reduction in tasks will result in higher work quality and employee efficiency. These are just two examples of what could come from a productive review, as they reveal areas of improvement and possible solutions. What’s important is that you lean on this tool to improve. Many employees feel that the outcomes of such meetings result in either keeping or losing their job.
This is your time to shine
An annual review is a perfect time to showcase what you have accomplished and how you reached those sales goals or increased your company’s social media following. Bosses and management are often extremely busy with their day-to-day tasks, so the face time you receive in this meeting is also extremely valuable. Be honest about your accomplishments, and ask for constructive criticism. If everything goes well, these are great indicators of what areas to focus on this coming year.
Be realistic with your goals
You may also be asked about the future. It may seem like a good idea to try and impress your boss with lofty goals or projections, but make sure they are realistic. If you struggled this year, promising high results and increasing expectations could feel like the right thing to do. With an entire year to figure out how you’re going to get there. However, a year can pass much faster than it seems. And suddenly, it’s November again, and you are nowhere close to that goal you set to appease the boss. Being realistic saves you from this metaphorical hole you’ve dug.
If you have a review coming up soon, remember to make the most of it. Weaponize what you learn from your review to become a better employee, coworker, or leader as the annual review is just another part of the continuous process of improving.