Are you ready for next year’s performance review cycle?

Part 1 of 3

So, are you ready for next year’s performance review cycle? We’ve all been living with a pandemic for a majority of this year, with almost everyone working remotely. The usual visual cues of physically seeing people at work are out the door. Which begs the question – do people “see” how you’re performing in this new world of virtual work? Remember the saying – out of sight, out of mind. Will that come to haunt you come performance review time in 2021?

I have three suggestions for you so that you’re more prepared. These suggestions should help come performance review time next year. (I’m making an assumption you’re company’s performance review cycle happens during the first quarter of every year.)

Businessman ready to sprint on starting line

Suggestion 1 of 3:

Each month, dedicate one of your 1:1s with your manager to lightweight performance discussions.

Your performance review relies on what your manager says and writes. Most people receive feedback very late, given that the performance cycle happens once a year. The only time you receive immediate feedback is usually when something negative comes up. And generally, under these circumstances, you might be put on a PIP (Performance Improvement Plan). 

Good, consistent performance is seldom brought up. Or if it does get brought up, it’s usually spoken in general terms. And depending on how many people report to your manager, your manager may not necessarily see or bring these up regularly.

Most good managers I know have regularly scheduled one-on-ones – either weekly or bi-weekly. So, dedicate one of these meetings each month to talk about your performance – both good and bad, so that you get time-appropriate feedback immediately.

Your manager might be surprised if you bring this up since he/she/they might not be used to having these discussions out of cycle. Let them know the benefits. One of the universal pain points of yearly performance discussions is the recency effect – people can only remember the last two months, maybe three at best.

Well, that’s it for this week’s newsletter. I hope this first part intrigues you, and that you’re looking forward to my next newsletter. In the meantime, feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions about this first suggestion.

Cheers, 

-JF

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