Tips for End of Year Employee Evaluations | Jobspivot
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Tips for End of Year Employee Evaluations

Have you ever entered a meeting room struggling to air your thoughts because you have not organised them yet? End of year employee evaluations can be stressful and anxiety-inducing, especially when there are so many things to cover. Finding the right words to say can be difficult without preparation, both for the employee and the manager. We are so caught up with work sometimes that we lose focus of our original objectives. There needs to be time taken to reflect on our performance for the whole year and stay focused on effective goals. Preparing for evaluations will help with personal and organisational growth in the long run.  

When evaluating someone, there are so many considerations involved; performance, workload, attitude, and skillset, etc. All of these aspects have to be explored in depth and developed for progress and productivity. The method of communication is crucial during evaluation. An individual must keep a professional tone, while trying to remain firm and constructive. Here are some tips for year end employee evaluations that will help employees and managers.

For the Employee

Lose the nerves with Mental Preparation 

“Anxiety is caused by a lack of control, organization, preparation, and action.” – David Kekich. Towards the end of the year, we may have so many things to say that it can get overwhelming to convey them to our managers. Taking time off from work and organising our thoughts helps us to come prepared for the evaluation. Besides examining areas that we would like to improve on, we can also look at areas that we did well in and share them during evaluation. We may have forgotten the accomplishments that we have achieved throughout the year and it is important to keep a list of them so that we can convey to our managers these contributions. Archiving testimonials, positive feedback in emails, and result metrics showing improvements are some of the things that we can track and share during the evaluation. This not only helps to convey our worth in the company and justification for career progression opportunities, it also serves as positive affirmations to ourselves. This way, we are more confident in presenting ourselves during the evaluation. 

Focus on Realising your Potential  

Being open to receiving constructive criticism is an important part of cultivating a growth mindset. Remember that we are not defined by our work output. When criticism is given on our work, it is not directed at us. Not taking such feedback personally and exercising humility helps us to see how we can better improve on areas that we fall short in and take active steps to become a better contributor to the team. Asking questions for clarification also helps us to understand where our managers are coming from, where they would like to see improvements in, and how the company can support us to grow in our careers and holistic development. 

An end of year evaluation is also a good opportunity to align expectations and see if our personal goals and values correspond with the company’s. Discussions on workload, working styles and scope of work can also help with figuring out a system that yields better performance. 

Stay Motivated and Look Ahead

Once we understand feedback from our managers, don’t be disheartened! It is important to be self-aware, to acknowledge our strengths and weaknesses before moving forward. Take suggestions to improve as good challenges for us to become better. Sharing with our managers a concrete plan for the year ahead with Key Performance Indicators after the evaluation will set us on the right path. Continue to gather feedback to stay motivated on self-improvement. 

For the Manager

Focus on Expanding Potential

Confusing feedback might stress employees more as they struggle to figure out what they need to do to perform better. During the evaluation, positive feedback can be conveyed to the employees first so that they can continue to stay competent in areas that they are good at. Positive feedback is great at boosting morale. This can be followed by constructive criticism on areas that our employee fell short in. When giving such criticism, it is important to also advise on the steps that the employee can take to improve. 

The end of the year can be the busiest time for businesses, it is important to ensure that employees receive the direction they need without feeling overwhelmed. Focus on a few key areas that we believe our employee can work on and has the capacity to improve. These areas can be monitored overtime without overwhelming our employees and ourselves. 

Aligning Expectations to be Better Supported 

As managers, we have our own set of expectations, our own KPIs to uphold. Conveying some of these expectations to our employees during evaluation can help to create new discussions on how the employees can support us better in clearing objectives. It is also ideal to create a comfortable space for our employees to air their thoughts and opinions on what can be improved upon at work based on their own experiences. Their suggestions may prove useful in more efficient and streamlined working processes. With more productive workers, we have better support structures in place. Ask questions on certain interests and skill sets that the employee would like to develop in and see if providing upskilling opportunities for them would help them to grow. Nurturing an employee will help him or her become a valuable asset to the company. 

Building Positive Relationships with Employees

While it is good to focus on output and productivity levels, we must also understand that employees are human. Providing reasonable expectations and creating safe spaces for employees to confide in us will help to improve relationships and team cohesiveness as a whole. If an employee is encountering some difficulties, exercising patience and understanding can help with finding out a solution that can help. Working through a problem together helps with understanding each other’s thought processes. We are better acquainted with knowledge on how our employees work best. 

All in all, preparing for end of year employee evaluations is not an easy task. Remember to start early and plan ahead for the new year! With the new year comes new beginnings, and new opportunities for the company to perform better.

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