Employee evaluations and reviews are no doubt critical to your organization. To make it more effective and successful, you might want to involve your employees in the process. This can be done with an employee self-evaluation, a method that boosts employee engagement and helps everyone focus better on their performance. Moreover, it helps employees to set their own career goals, track their performance, and build a career vision.
What is self-evaluation and its purpose?
In a self-evaluation, a set of questions are presented to the employee so they can review their performance during a particular period of time. The process may be complex, but in the long run, it can be rewarding to both the company and its employees as it empowers them to focus on the different aspects of their job performance while understanding which areas may need improvement.
During self evaluations, employees are typically asked to think about their long-term career goals, basic responsibilities, professional development, and other aspects of their performance. This gives performance management and planning a more structural approach and allows employees to analyze their contributions easily. Through self-evaluation, employees can embrace an introspective way of thinking about their career goals and their job while gaining a deeper understanding of themselves. Self-evaluation could also be used as a tool for career promotion, as it encourages an employee to plan and reflect on their future with your company.
However, not all employees may be up for it. They may be afraid to evaluate themselves and their performance because of the following reasons:
1. Employees do not understand the purpose of self-evaluation.
Simply asking your employees to review their own performance without explaining why they should do it could leave them feeling confused and unsure of what to do. By explaining the purpose of the self-evaluation, you can answer their questions and explain to them how the process can help with their professional growth and career goals.
2. Employees underestimate the significance of their self-appraisals.
Employees might not want to evaluate themselves if they do not understand how it can benefit them. It’s critical to establish a better relationship with them before the evaluation. Show them that you value their opinion and that as their manager, you won’t ignore their evaluation.
3. There is insufficient equipment, memory, or information to self-evaluate their performance.
Self-evaluation can be ineffective if the employee lacks the information to analyze themselves objectively. They might not be able to recall all the projects and tasks they completed or areas where they were able to excel. In some cases, an employee might not have enough to evaluate because they were hired only recently.
How to encourage employees to perform self-evaluation
1. Discuss their work progress and vision with them.
Initiate a dialogue to start encouraging employees to discuss their work with you. You can organize periodic meetings between employees and managers so that every employee can share their thoughts and reveal the important aspects of their careers, the skills they use, and what they want to learn.
2. Explain how the self-evaluation will be used.
Be clear on how the employee self-evaluation can benefit them, who will read their evaluations, and its effects on their career growth. They should know if it could lead to bonuses, rewards, or a promotion.
3. Stay positive.
Make sure they know that the evaluation will not be used against them. Effective self-evaluation must reflect and address their own weaknesses—and they might not own up to those if they think that their managers will use the information against them.
4. Recognize and acknowledge achievements.
Encourage everyone to be specific with their achievements and do your part in recognizing their contributions. You might want to provide incentives or share their achievements during meetings, too. That way, they know that upper management acknowledges their efforts for the company.
5. Offer mentoring and guidance.
Managers should give feedback to employees, but it should not be critical. The point of giving feedback is to provide the right advice and lead the employee in the right direction for self-improvement.