Advice on How to Ace Your Next Performance Review and Get a Raise

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One of the advantages of not attending school is that you no longer get grades. At least, that's how it seems at first.

Every day in the workplace, you are rated by your supervisors and coworkers. Unless you get frequent input from your boss, which is no guarantee, you may not be able to measure your success at work until your yearly review.

But the end-of-year assessment doesn't have to be dreadful; an annual performance review allows you to have an open, honest dialogue with your supervisor about how they see your job performance—as well as what chances for improvement you have. Make sure you're as prepared as possible for yours by following these simple measures (that will also help you land that raise).

Perform the calculations

In a perfect world, your evaluation would be a succession of wonderful praises followed by an offer of a large, fat increase. You've worked really hard over the previous 12 months—the very least you deserve is some recognition, right? Wrong. Your manager may be generally pleased with your job, but chances are they weren't keeping as close an eye on your development as they should have.

Even if your review is going well, you owe it to yourself to be prepared with statistics on your professional accomplishments over the last year. Make a few notes on your job triumphs before your review. To impress your boss, you may need to do some calculations. Did you increase the number of Twitter followers for your firm by 25%? Make a note of it. Estimate how much time and money you've saved if you discovered a new tool that enhanced your team's productivity.

Demonstrating how you raised sales or saved the firm money might help you get a raise. Come up with some cold, hard facts on why you're killing it in your career, whatever you define as success.

Inform the truth

In principle, a yearly review is a good opportunity to discuss any issues you may have. Your manager has the ability to evaluate your performance, therefore it's only reasonable that you communicate any difficulties you're having. However, before you file any complaints, consider how truthful you are. Is your supervisor open to constructive criticism? Do they see workers who file grievances as "difficult"? Even if your manager is open to input, proceed with caution. You don't want your manager to believe you're dissatisfied with your job and plan to quit, or else they may not completely invest in your future at the firm.
If a raise is your main goal, you should refrain from making any complaints unless absolutely essential or if they assist bolster your case for a raise. For example, if you took up a coworker's tasks after they departed and your workload rose as a result, it is a complaint that might aid your case. Too many complaints may take your attention away from your aim.

If you must gripe, sprinkle the talk with praises about your management or insights into why you like your work. After all, a little sugar helps the medicine go down.

Determine your goals

This is not the time to dither. You should know precisely what you want before you start your review. The major ones are a raise, a promotion, or an office—but they aren't likely to happen every year.

Consider requesting for a title change if your work description has changed in the last year. Do you want to learn more about your field? See whether your boss will reimburse you for educational materials or a trip to a conference. If you want to change desks because you don't like one of your colleagues, now is the time to do it. Requests at your yearly review are less likely to surprise your manager. Make the most of the chance.

Make a plan

You won't be able to address all of your work-related problems on your own, but going to your boss with a laundry list of complaints and no prospective answers may irritate them. Make an attempt to propose potential solutions to any problems you're experiencing at work. If you're content at work but want to make adjustments, such as taking on larger assignments, you'll need to provide solutions. Before your evaluation, ask yourself: If your boss is receptive to your ideas, do you have the plan to make them a reality? Your manager will be considerably more open to change if they can aid you straight away.

Always remember that practice makes perfect

You've put forth a lot of effort to prepare for this evaluation. You've kept account of all the praises you've gotten from customers, given careful consideration to what you want, and evaluated areas where you may improve. That work will be rewarded, particularly if you practice. Your degree of anxiety will be determined by how well you get along with your management and how confident you are in your performance. Any demands or complaints you have—"I'd want a raise, please!"—will help the dialogue go much more smoothly.

Request that a close friend or family member rehearse the discussion with you. When you're worried, you're more likely to trip over your words and iron out any flaws in the dialogue. Be ready to accept and react to constructive criticism. You should be aware of any areas where you can improve. Also, avoid being defensive. It is preferable to develop confident replies about how you will overcome any difficulties.

This is particularly vital if you're asking for a raise. Use this opportunity to try making a persuasive request. Outline why you believe you deserve a raise (use the facts you gathered) and how much of a raise you'd want (start high so your company can offer lower).

You've got this

You already know you've been crushing it at work. Any criticisms your boss has should not come as a surprise unless they are poor at their job. Being cool and collected during your yearly evaluation will impress your management even more. Make sure to rejoice once your review is wonderful (which it will be!). You deserve it.
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