Self-Appraisal in a Tough Market

Performance Management and Appraisal Skills

Self Appraisal Training

Writing Your Job Performance Evaluation Or Self-Appraisal in a Tough MarketPerformance Management Course

Self-evaluations or appraisals of your job performance can easily be viewed as a tedious or frightening task.

In today's tough job market it's more important than ever to take this process seriously, but it doesn't have to be intimidating.

You should view the completion of these self-evaluations/appraisals as an important opportunity, allowing you to demonstrate in concrete, practical terms the value of your contribution to your employer, in a context where you know they are listening!

This article gives you tips on how to do this - giving you practical, effective tools for turning the process of completing job performance evaluations to your advantage.

You can not only retain your job but demonstrate why you should be promoted!


In today's job market we all need to be more proactive in getting ahead. Every year most employers ask their employees to fill out a self-evaluation.

This article will cover four standard areas of the review process and the steps you need to take to show that you are performing above and beyond your job responsibilities.

It allows you to be in the driver's seat of the review process. Writing your own review is always a tedious task. The best way to show you are on top of your game is to write your evaluation in "tangible format".

Tangibles are measurable and allow you to show how you are contributing to your employer's bottom line.

Example: Coordinated a project for an account from start to finish which resulted in increased revenue for the division/company of $$$.

Job Responsibilities and Skills

Clearly state all your job responsibilities. List all the things you do every day, from phone calls, emails, budgets, account follow up,  computer skills, projects, and include such things as:

Strong communication skills, Ability to multi-task, Results oriented, Ability to focus on achieving strategic objectives, Nurturing and instilling confidence in your team members, and Providing support as a manager.

State exactly what you worked on and whether you worked on them by yourself or as part of a team. What are your business strategies within the confines of your position? If you manage or work on a specific account or businesses, are you initiating and developing those businesses/accounts and achieving their demands? If you have a dollar figure include it.

Examples:  "I manage a team ... I lead the group ... I worked with the team ... on zxy accounts.  I worked on a 50K account, managing the day to day communications."


List major achievements that demonstrate your ability to apply knowledge and utilise skills in performing your job responsibilities.  Push the envelope and say what you did as you see it. Be honest but make sure to acknowledge all your accomplishments. Use words like

-   Successfully...

-   Negotiated...

-   Contributed...

-   Supported and nurtured

Example: If you actually landed the big account, it is your account. If you worked with a team to land the account, then state that you worked as a team to land the account.  Either way, it shows that you worked to open a new account. Quantify what it is worth to the company in potential or actual dollars amounts: e.g., "account xyz will generate $$$ in the next year and has a potential to reach $$$ in the next 3 years."

Maybe your contribution seems small, but you are still contributing to the profitability of the company.  If the numbers are down for the year, consider whether you can say they are higher than other departments, other offices, or brands you compete with. There is usually some area or competition that is doing worse.

Overall Performance

Describe areas of strength, growth and those areas that need improvement and or development.

Always list more strengths than areas that need improvement or development.  It is a good idea to acknowledge at least one area for development (this enhances credibility), but here is where you can ask for more responsibility and help your boss feel invested in your development.  If you want to move up the ladder and you aren't developing because your boss doesn't want to spend the time mentoring you or giving you the responsibility, there is a way to make this point positively. You can address it like this:

Strengths: List what you do and feel confident about. Demonstrate your understanding of the marketplace in which your business operates. Don't forget the contribution you make to the bottom line, whether by support or direct involvement.

Growth: Take some of your greatest moments from the past year where you have had the opportunity to demonstrate new skills.  State strongly that you are up for more in the coming year. 

Development:  Describe an interest in being more involved in decision making, working closely with supervisors on projects that interest you.  Put a shared responsibility for this development on your manager.

Example:  I would like to and can develop the following skills ... and increase my responsibilities. I am confident I will be able to do this with management's guidance and when I am given opportunities to participate and contribute to new opportunities. 

Summary:  State briefly what you have done and can do that enables you to continue to contribute to bottom line growth and generate new business opportunities, demonstrating performance of your job above and beyond of what is expected by you.

Setting goals for the year:  This is often not included in a review, so it is something you may need to initiate with your manager. Ask for 4 or 5 goals to be spelt out and weighted. Break it down into the following three points:

-  What  are the goals

-  How can they be achieved

-  On a scale of one to a hundred, what weight do they have on your job?

If they or their weighting change during the year make sure you and your boss update them. That way you will be able to achieve what is expected of you and you can base next year's evaluation on these achievements or growths.

Good luck with your evaluation, and remember - there is no harm in self-promotion!

This article was contributed by Joseph Becwar

Joe Becwar focuses on coaching individuals in evaluating and achieving both personal and professional goals, assisting them to transform their lives into what they want. He is the founder and Managing Director of Coaching and Consulting Group, LLC.


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