Coping with performance review anxiety

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When it comes to performance reviews, managers and employees share one thing in common this time of year – anxiety. Whether it’s the stress of compiling everyone’s review on time while juggling a full workload or it’s the anxiety of anticipating the worst, there are ways to reduce the nervousness associated with performance appraisals – it’s all in the planning.

Save yourself some time and quell that anxiety by setting up a folder for performance reviews and treat it like a living document where you file away emails, projects and other milestones throughout the year.

The content of this document should spill over into your weekly meetings where you bring up these events and performances and discuss them with your manager to highlight your accomplishments and talk about next steps you should take to make improvements. When you set up an open communication with your manager, it takes the sting out of any negative issues that need to be discussed and gives you the opportunity to improve before you reach that time of year when your performance is reviewed. This takes the burden off managers too, because it allows employees to grow and perform at their best.

While you’re expected to stick to your goals set out at the beginning of the year, things change. These goals should be revisited and revised from time to time to allow for growth and to avoid the frustration of bending a goal to fit the changing circumstances that occur throughout the year. Nothing is static and managers understand that goals need to be flexible, especially if it means improving the bottom line. The result is a more fulfilling experience for both managers and employees and it helps to boost self-esteem, leading to increased productivity and a more rewarding experience on the job.

Above all, adopting the right attitude will go a long way in establishing a healthy working relationship with your manager. When you demonstrate an eagerness to cooperate and go the extra mile, it will pay off in dividends and ease the anxiety of your performance appraisal. With the right attitude, you can turn performance reviews into a rewarding experience that will help pave the way as you progress in your professional development.