WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
Dick Grote, author of How to Be Good at Performance Appraisals, has a lot to say on the subject, and most of it isn’t good. “I’ll admit it’s important to get the employee’s point of view in the process, but this is the wrong way to do it,” he says. In his view, since study after study has shown that we are horrible judges of our own performance, any self-evaluation should focus exclusively on positives; people should not be self-critics. Timothy Butler, a senior fellow and the director of career development programmes at Harvard Business School, agrees that self-assessments aren’t the best way to evaluate performance. But he believes they do serve a purpose: “They’re an important source of information about what happened in the past year,” Butler says.
No matter where you stand on their value, self-appraisals are a staple of office life. So the question is how to handle them. Here are some principles to help you when review time rolls around.