How to prepare for your annual performance review

We’re 30 days away from the EOFY and at this time of the year many of our community will undertake the process of a annual performance review with their manager.

For some, a performance review is a chance to review and reset goals, check-in on performance and seek to advance to a new pay increment.  For others, it’s the dread of performance review time and ‘just another conversation’ about performance that sometimes spikes our anxiety.

So, how can you make the most of your performance review?  If you ‘have to’ participate, why not make it a worthwhile experience?  Who knows, you might actually enjoy the process?

We believe there are four vital things your performance review can achieve.

It helps you:

  • evaluate your progress
  • weed out any unnecessary projects or tasks
  • review your professional growth needs
  • resets your goals.

Evaluate your progress

The best thing you can do is review your work goals and evaluate how you’ve progressed.  Don’t be stressed if all the goals weren’t achieved, focus on what has been achieved and to what degree.  To help you prepare for your review consider the following

  • What goals did you achieve?  Do they have a metric you can report on?
  • What processes or systems did you review/implement?  How did they achieve efficiencies?
  • How do you feel about your work compared to last year?  More positive and in control?
  • List things that you did that weren’t in scope, however, were completed, and demonstrated your flexibility.

Weed out the unnecessary

Sometimes, we set too many work-related goals at the beginning of the year that we don’t actually get through everything we intended to.  Additionally, some people just set goals at the beginning of the year and don’t evaluate how relevant they are to their job along the way.  This check-in is an opportunity to weed out unnecessary projects so you can really focus on what needs to be achieved.

Prior to your review consider:

  • What goals were set but not addressed and why?  Were they necessary? Why did they fall off the radar?
  • What tasks/projects have been deprioritised?  Should they continue to be a low/no priority?

Review your professional growth needs

At the beginning of each year, we all set ambitious tasks to undertake more training, read more books, or listen to podcasts with the aim to fuel our minds and grow our skills and experience.  For many, Covid lockdowns and working from home may have impeded our ability to attend training, however, that doesn’t mean we should neglect the investment we need to make in our professional development.

Prior to your review consider:

  • What training did you undertake and what value did you ‘bring back’ to the office?
  • What podcasts or books did you read and what resonated with you?
  • What weaknesses have you identified and what professional development should you consider to help address any skill gaps?

Reset your goals

If you set goals and abandoned or ignored them, this check-in could reinvigorate your motivation and inspire you to get back on track, course correct, and achieve more in the coming year.

Before your review consider:

  • What goals need to carry over and how you might measure their success in the coming months?
  • What new professional goals would you like to achieve?  How do they align and what support is needed from your work/team/manager?
  • What personal goals have you set for yourself and how can your manager support you?


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