Performance reviews – those scheduled chats with your manager about your job performance. Whether you’re new to the workforce or a seasoned veteran, they can be a bit nerve-wracking. It’s natural to wonder how you’re doing and whether the feedback will ultimately be positive or leave you feeling a little apprehensive.

Let’s break down performance reviews, why they’re important, and how to walk into yours feeling confident and ready to make the most out of the experience.

What is a

Performance Review, Anyway?

A performance review is a structured conversation between you and your supervisor or manager. The focus is on evaluating your work, strengths, areas for improvement, and overall goals. Here in Malta, reviews may occur annually. In some cases, they may not occur at all (unfortunately – and this is often the cause of employees leaving), but some companies are moving towards more frequent check-ins.

Why Do Companies Conduct Them?

Performance reviews are essential for both you and your employer. Here’s why:

  • Growth: Reviews pinpoint areas where you can improve, giving you direction to develop your skills further.
  • Alignment: It ensures you understand how your contributions fit into your team’s and the company’s larger goals.
  • Communication: Regular reviews open a channel between you and your manager for clear communication and expectations.
  • Recognition: A great time to highlight your successes and the value you contribute.

What Happens During a Performance Review?

The format varies between companies, but here’s the general flow:

1. Preparation: Sometimes you might complete a self-assessment ahead of time, reflecting on your accomplishments and challenges. Your manager does the same.

2. The Discussion: The focus is on your responsibilities, achievements, areas to develop, and possibly setting new goals for the future period.

3. Feedback: Expect to receive feedback on your work and a chance to give your input.

How to Ace Performance Reviews

Preparation is key! Here’s how to get yourself ready:

  • Reflect: Review your job description, last year’s goals, and your notable wins and challenges.
  • Gather Evidence Have examples ready to back up your wins (think of client feedback, project results, etc.).
  • Prepare Questions: Come ready with questions for your manager about development opportunities or anything else you want to discuss.

Tips to Remember

  • Keep an Open Mind: Performance reviews are growth tools. Be receptive, even if some feedback stings a bit.
  • Embrace Honesty: Be upfront about your challenges – managers appreciate honesty and a willingness to improve.
  • Focus on the Future Use the review to map out a path for your professional development, including the support you need

Performance reviews don’t have to be stressful events. View them as an opportunity for growth, clearer communication, and recognition of your hard work. And remember, a bit of preparation and a positive attitude go a long way! When was the last time you had your performance review?

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