This year has been tough, and the thought of conducting a performance review probably doesn’t seem that appealing right now. Who wants to look back at this year, right? I get it. But, Assistants must have performance reviews with their Executives. So many of us do not take the time to reflect on our achievements and promote the value we bring to our organisations. Now more than ever, we have to show our worth. So, my first point is this.
Make sure you have a performance review.
You must show your Executive that your career and your growth is important to you. If you don’t take your career seriously, why should they? So, firstly, make sure you have a performance review this year.
Reflecting on this year.
A starting point for any performance reviews is self-reflection. Take some time to look back on the year and write down your accomplishments and also the areas that you have struggled with. That might be slightly more difficult because I think for most of us it has been a blur. If you are struggling to remember everything, go back through your emails and task lists.
Some organisation’s ask their employees to write a self-reflection document before going into their performance reviews. I know that some Assistants struggle with this process. There is a great article in The Muse that covers the exercise, and they include a helpful template. In a nutshell, they suggest, you focus on the following questions:
- What projects have you enjoyed working on the most, and why?
- What projects are you most proud of?
- What are the things you’ve learned?
- What are some things you would have done differently, looking back?
- What has your boss done to help you do your job better? What could they do differently?
- Did you receive any feedback during the review period, either from your boss or your peers, that resonated with you? Why?
- What upcoming projects are you excited about?
- Do you feel like you’re adding skills to your resume? If not, what would you like to add?
- What areas would you want more feedback on?
Link your accomplishments to clear ROI.
I can’t overstate how important it is to showcase your achievements this year and the goals you have hit. But more than that, you have to be very specific in how you link your accomplishments to the growth of the business (either saving the organisation money or making it money). How do you do that?
You have to really think about the tangible outcomes of what you have done this year. Look at everything on a granular level. What specific tasks added value? What tasks did you complete that helped move your Executive’s objectives and goals forward? Where did you save them time and therefore the organisation money?
Assuming that you have both been working remotely this year, it will probably be the case that a lot of what you have done has slipped under the radar of your Executive. Now is the time to bring it to their attention.
What can be improved?
A lot has changed this year. So many Assistants have, very quickly, pivoted into remote and Virtual Assistants. This is a hard transition, especially if you enjoyed the day to day contact and buzz that you get working in an office. It certainly makes communication easier with your Executive when you see them most days. It has been incredible to see the shift Assistants have taken so successfully, and so many of you have supported your organisations through huge changes.
Next year, I think we can expect much of the same. So now is also time to reflect on what can be improved and how you go about making those changes so that next year you can work more effectively from a remote location.
This also includes providing feedback to your Executive. What can they be doing to make sure you are working well together?