For Employees - Surviving Your Performance Review

Profiting and Making The Best Of The Dreaded Process

Very few of us actually LIKE being evaluated, particularly when there is something important at stake. It certainly seems like there IS something important going on when you walk into the performance review, and there are probably very few people who don't experience anxiety before and during the meeting.

Being an active participant in your own review is very important, because it allows you to feel more in control, and it's not a good idea to count on the expertise of your manager to conduct a useful and worthwhile review.

Your Mindset Determines Value

Regardless of how good your manager is at providing useful information in your review, and regardless if the process if often flawed (it usually is), you can STILL get value from the whole enterprise, but it is all going to depend on your own mindset.

If you approach the process with dread, and passively, you probably won't get much out of it, or worse, you'll walk away feeling undervalued, and demotivated. If you participate in the process by actively looking to LEARN, rather than to defend or promote yourself, you'll find at least some value, and in many cases a great deal of value.

But Number One Tip Is....Ask Questions, and First Seek To Understand

No matter how poor your manager is, there will always be some nuggets of information that you might be able to use to improve your performance, and at least present yourself in a positive light. So, the number one tip is to FIRST TRY TO UNDERSTAND what's being said. Only then should you worry about the consequences. You must ask questions in your review, because it's only by drilling down that you can separate what's useful to you and what's not. Don't accept vague comments. Ask for examples, and get specifics.

More Hints and Tips On How To Benefit From Your Performance Review

Prep for Your Review -

By EMILY GLAZER - Amanda Davidowitz's first performance review was going smoothly as the compliments rolled in. Then came an unexpected critique. Ms. Davidowitz says her manager "called her out" for not listening all the way through when others were speaking and jumping in too soon. "I was really hurt, thrown off guard and unprepared," says the 24-year-old. Many younger workers are unprepared for what they hear in their first performance review. But how they react will leave a lasting impression on a manager. The key, experts say, is to have a game plan for how you'll present your accomplishments and goals and how you'll respond to any kudos and critiques. Viewed 857 Times )

5 Ways HR Can Make Your Life (and Job) Better

By Padmaja Ganeshan-Singh - It's easy to paint HR as the bad guy, but they have a lot to offer you as an employee that can help with your career, and job success. Viewed 354 Times )

6 reasons why your boss doesn't thank you enough (or ever) - The Business Journals

By Paul White - Wonder why your boss doesn't recognize your achievements? Here are five reasons why there's a lack of recognition and thank you's, and while it's small consolation, you'll find it's not that they don't care. Viewed 411 Times )

How do you manage your Performance Goals? %u2014 Actus Performance

By Paul Boston - I am sure many of your have found yourself getting ready to meet with your manager at the end of the year to review your yearly performance goals and set new ones for the coming year. As you are reviewing your SMART goals from the previous year, you start to gain insights into your new goals for the year ahead. However, you notice that as the year progressed and the day-to-day business needs were occurring, what seemed like achievable goals slowly started to move and shift, and what you intended to accomplish did not quite happen. Now you need to assess your performance achievements from the previous year (and sometimes this is a truly creative exercise!) and establish new performance goals for the year ahead. Viewed 572 Times )

How to prepare for your performance appraisal

By Halogen - Most employees do not sufficiently prepare for and plan out their performance appraisal meetings. Arm yourself beforehand with facts, and arguments to support your opinions. Viewed 262 Times )

10 ways to get the most out of your performance appraisal |

By Simon North - Some good tips for employees on how to get at least something positive from the performance appraisal meeting. If for nothing else, check out the Daleks picture at the top. Viewed 421 Times )

From Review To Raise: You Should Be Evaluating Your Peers and And Boss

By Lindsay Cross - In 1992 I authored a white paper supporting bi-directional evaluation, but this article is nonsensical. Aimed at employees, it suggests they should evaluate peers and boss -- a pointless exercise unless the performance appraisal system in place actually solicits and records that information. Which most don't. Viewed 556 Times )


By na - Whether your boss immigrated from heaven or hell or somewhere in between, anticipating your annual performance review or appraisal is probably stressful, anxious or even anguishing. The reasons for this have become abundantly clear to me over my more than thirty years as a management consultant Viewed 691 Times )

Signing the Performance Review: What's It Mean?

By ANDREA KAY - Some information about signing, and not signing the form at the end of your annual review. Viewed 592 Times )

The Gen-Yers Guide to Surviving Your Performance Review

By na - Bit hard to read, and I'm not sure why this applies to gen y as opposed to other generations, but if you can read this, good tips on what to do before, and during your review. Viewed 644 Times )

Performance Evaluations from Hell - and how to survive them

By na - More tips on dealing with performance evaluations, particularly with an unskilled manager -- focuses in part on record keeping. Viewed 656 Times )

Career Advice for ADHD Adults: Performance Evaluations at Work | ADDitude - Attention Deficit Advice

By Michele Novotni, Ph.D. - Remember when you were in school and it was report card time? Anxiety often hit hard and fast. In the same way, performance evaluations on the job can cause fear and trembling in ADD adults -- especially in this economy when job cuts are on the rise. So what can you do to not only survive the performance evaluation, but also to shine? Here are some tips: Viewed 663 Times )

Tips for surviving an employee annual performance review - National Life in the Cubicle |

By Dudley B. Dawson - Tongue in cheek tips on how to survive the annual review -- but just in case you don't get it, you really do NOT want to do these things. Tres amusante. Viewed 686 Times )

Surviving you Annual Review

By SYBIL DUNLOP - A little sparse, but a few nuggets: Here's the important one: "Research has shown that humans (and even rats!) over emphasize bad feedback. For this reason, you can leave your review hearing with the negative feedback ringing in your ear while discounting all the wonderful things people said about you." Viewed 682 Times )

Using Your Performance Review to Negotiate a Raise You Deserve

By Tess C. Taylor, PHR - It's that time of year again when the department manager notifies you that it's time to have a chit-chat in the office about your performance at work. While this can be more than just a little intimidating for many folks, did you know that it's also a prime time to negotiate a much-deserved promotion? The key is to walk confidently into your manager's office armed with the evidence of your value to the company and a list of achievements that back this up. Viewed 616 Times )

We've developed a short mini-guide on how to benefit from your review. It's called Getting The Most From Performance Appraisals For Employees and you can preview it free of charge. here.

| Library Home Page |
Pages Updated On: 6-Sep-2016 - 15:26:57

We can help you with the various parts of a performance management system with our miniguides on each component.

Instantly downloadable and built to save you time.

There's even help for employees on how to navigate the process.

Click the image below to view the entire catalog.

Viiew all our performance review tools for managers and employees

About Company

Bacal & Associates was founded in 1992 by consultant and book author, Robert Bacal. Robert's books on performance management and reviews have been published by McGraw-Hill. He is available for consultation, training and keynote speaking on performance and management at work.


Robert Bacal

Bacal's Books
About The Company
About Our Performance Management Philosophy
Privacy Policy

Our Related Websites

Leadership Resource Center
Upgrade your understanding of modern leadership in a complex world. Stay current.

The Planning Resource Center

From strategic planning for businesses, small and large, right through to financial planning for millennials, stay current with the latest thoughts and actions on planning.

Bacal & Associates Store
Free and paid guides, books, and documents on business, management and more.

We Believe

  • Performance management and appraisal MUST be a partnership between manager and employee where BOTH benefit.
  • Performance management can be the lever for improved employee engagement.
  • The review process is the LEAST important part of performance management
  • If managers aren't managing employee performance, why are they there?

Get in Touch

  • Phone:
    (613) 764-0241
  • Email:
  • Address:

  • Bacal & Associates
  • 722 St. Isidore Rd.
  • Casselman
  • Ontario
  • Canada, K0A 1M0