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Performance Evaluations Feedback Incompetence

Before my annual evaluation with my manager, I did a self-evaluation and gave myself honest ratings that were pretty high. I then met with my manager, and his evaluation of me was much lower. He knew practically nothing about what I had accomplished, and his ratings are the ones that will be used for raises and promotions. What can I do?

When a manager is not familiar with the accomplishments of his employees, he or she is not particularly accomplished as a manager. When it comes to deserving marginal ratings, all eyes should go on your manager. After all, a central part of a manager's job is to maintain a high degree of contact with the members of his or her team and to provide a good deal of coaching, feedback, and guidance.

One step is to make sure that your self-evaluation is placed in your file along with your manager's evaluation of you. Be sure that your strong self-ratings are substantiated by specific examples of your successes and accomplishments. This self-evaluation should not be couched in language that whines or complains, but should be framed as a businesslike presentation of the ways in which you have met or exceeded the agreed-upon goals.

In addition, since your manager is not on top of your performance, you should let him know when you meet key goals or milestones. Your language should sound more like updating than bragging, but if you do not promote yourself, this manager is not likely to promote you either.

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