Monthly Archives: May 2016

Performance Evaluation On Writing Tips

Self-assessments, also known as self-appraisals or self-evaluations, are popular tools used by management to learn how employees view their own performance. Theses assessments help close the gap between expectations and performance, and provide a channel to open communication about goals, opportunities and development.

While managers and supervisors share their opinions of employee performance and ability to meet expectations during evaluations, the self-assessment lets employees discuss what they see as important projects completed, share new skills and techniques acquired, and remind employers of all the great work they have done since the last performance review.

Writing a self-assessment

Writing a self-evaluation can be difficult for many employees. Despite knowing themselves and their work better than anyone, employees can struggle to summarize it in a way that comes off as objective, rather than conceited.

Here are a few tips to help you with your assessment.

1. Be proud

The main goal of the self-evaluation is to highlight your accomplishments. Employees need to point to specific tasks and projects that highlight their best work. When describing those accomplishments, employees should be sure to emphasize the impact each of those achievements had on the business as a whole, in order to show how valuable their work is to the company.

Julie Rieken, CEO of evaluation software company Trakstar, noted that employees should connect their actions with a manager’s goals.

“If your manager needs to hit a certain number, share how you played a role in hitting the number,” Rieken said in a blog post. “Accomplishments you list should connect with business objectives.”

2. Be honest

Honesty is another critical aspect of writing a self-review. It’s more than likely that the boss knows when a good job was done, so trying to highlight a project or task that was just OK, rather than great, won’t have much impact.

Being honest also means pointing out some areas that could be improved. Timothy Butler, a senior fellow and director of career-development programs at Harvard Business School, advised employees to use developmental language when critiquing the areas in which they need to improve.

“You don’t want to say, ‘Here’s where I really fall down,'” Butler told the Harvard Business Review. “Instead, say, ‘Here’s an area I want to work on. This is what I’ve learned. This is what we should do going forward.'”

3. Ask about career-development opportunities

Butler also encouraged employees to use their self-evaluations as a time to ask their bosses for career-development opportunities. This should occur even if the employer isn’t asking the employee for it, because if you don’t ask, it likely won’t happen, he said. By showing an interest, you put it in your manager’s mind that you are interested, and he or she is more likely to be on the lookout for tasks, assignments and training prospects for you.

4. Be professional

Finally, employees need to remember to always be professional when writing self-assessments. This means they should avoid using it as an opportunity to bash the boss for poor leadership skills or criticize co-workers for making the employees’ lives more difficult.

Being professional also means giving the appraisal its due attention, like any other important project that crosses your desk. Dominique Jones, chief people officer at Halogen Software, advised treating your self-appraisal like a work of art that builds over time. You’ll be much happier with the end result if you give yourself time to reflect and carefully support your self-assessment, she said.

“Use examples to support your assertions, and … make sure that you spell- and grammar-check your documents,” Jones wrote in a blog post. “These are all signs of how seriously you take the process and its importance to you.”

Job on Good Terms

When it’s time to move on from a job, you usually know. Sometimes quitting is the result of a toxic work environment, in other instances it’s for career advancement. Regardless of the motivation to exit your current job, it doesn’t have to be a negative experience.

“Be direct and honest about your unhappiness, but stay away from criticism,” Amy Klimek, vice president of human resources at ZipRecruiter told Business News Daily. “This change is ultimately about you, not them. Remain positive and move on.”

The way you leave a job is your decision alone, but it’s important to be smart about it and leave on a positive note. Business News Daily has created an infographic to help you quit your job in a way that won’t burn any bridges.

Timing is everything

It may be tough to decide when it’s the right time to approach your boss or manager about your raise, but timing truly makes a difference.

“If your company has a regular performance review schedule, try to have a conversation about your compensation a couple months in advance so that your boss has time to make a case and advocate for budget ahead of that process,” Lydia Frank, editorial and marketing director for PayScale, wrote in a blog post. “If you wait for the performance-review process, often the decisions about salary increases have already been made by the management team.”

Think about timing in terms of your company’s overall performance as well, said Brian McClusky, human resources director at InkHouse.

“If your firm had just had an unprofitable quarter, lost a major client, etc., the timing may not be right to request a raise, regardless of how strong your individual performance is,” McClusky said.

Determine your worth

Characterizing your worth is a combination of the work you’ve done and the national average for your position. Take stock of what you’ve done and research how much people in the same field are making before you present the numbers to your boss during your conversation.

“Be realistic when reviewing the data, considering experience, location, education, etc.,” said Paul Wolfe, senior vice president of human resources atIndeed. “Once you’ve determined a comfortable range, develop a plan to broach the subject with your manager.”

“Being able to take inventory of your work demonstrates self-awareness and the readiness to have serious conversations about your career,” Ragini Parmar, vice president of talent operations at Credit Karma, said in another Business News Daily article. “For example, if you’re looking for a raise or promotion, it’s important to do your homework. You’ll always be more effective if you’re able to have a real data-driven conversation with your manager.”

According to Hannah Morgan, the career expert behind Career Sherpa, a great way to keep your current boss up to date is by sending him or her a weekly or monthly email update. State what you accomplished in objective, measurable terms. And always try to tie your achievements back to organizational goals or how those accomplishments benefit the bottom line, she said in a Career Sherpa blog post.

Jobs Career strategies tips

Layoffs and terminated contracts can happen to anyone, at any time. Sometimes it’s expected; other times, you’re completely blindsided. Regardless of the circumstances, you now have the difficult task of finding your next source of income.

Although you’re not working for someone at the moment, you still have a job to do, said Kimberly Schneiderman, a practice development manager at RiseSmart, a company that provides outplacement and career transition services.That job is to represent yourself and continually build your expertise to stay relevant in the marketplace.

1. Work on your personal brand

When you’re looking for jobs, your application materials — your resume, portfolio and online profiles — are essential to creating a good impression on employers. David Gilcher, lead resource manager at Kavaliro staffing firm, said one of the first things you should do during your “in between” phase is update your resume.

“Your resume is your brand statement,” Gilcher told Business News Daily. “Employers want to know what you’ve been up to [and] are interested in learning about the technologies and tools you’ve used lately. Be sure to list your recent accomplishments. Make sure those items are very clear to see on your resume. Once your resume is good to go, make sure it’s online as soon as possible.”

Gilcher also advised polishing your social media presence and showing off your latest work and skills.

“Social media is a great way to show what you’re all about and what you know,” he said. “You can use … blogs [or LinkedIn] to post about topics relevant to the work you do. Providing your insight in a public forum can help potential employers see your perspectives and depth of knowledge.”

“Let the world know about what value you can bring to their business,” added Fred Mouawad, CEO of Taskworld. “There are many tools available, like Wix, where you can build a website/portfolio with zero coding skills. However, web presence is not just limited to having an online portfolio. Follow influencers in your industry on social media, [and] write articles showcasing your expertise.”

2. Find relevant volunteer opportunities

Volunteering in your area of interest is a great activity to pursue between jobs, said Marian Valia, another practice development manager at RiseSmart. This could entail working an event hosted by a prominent industry player, or even offering pro-bono consulting.

“Volunteering in an industry [you] would like to land a job in works in two ways,” Valia said. “First, it allows the job seeker to network with their area of interest and tap into the ‘hidden’ job market (jobs that haven’t been posted yet). Second, this is a great way for job seekers to better understand if the industry is right for them.”

Gilcher agreed, adding that it can also be personally rewarding to volunteer.

“Having those ‘feel-good’ moments when you’re in between jobs can be a morale booster even if times [are] tough,” he said.

3. Learn a new skill

On an average, it takes about one to three months to find a new job, according to Money. However, it can take up to six months to find a job that you really like, Mouawad said.

“That’s long enough to learn a new skill,” he said. “Learning a new language, doing short-term professional courses or even pursuing a hobby can make your resume stronger and justify breaks in work experience.”

“A mastery of [industry] skills will set you apart from your competition time and time again,” Gilcher added. “If you’re concerned about having the money to pay for the courses, it is worth noting that many courses are free. There are thousands of resources either online or out in the real world that are within grasp to use for your education.”