5 Tips For Writing a Perfect Self-Evaluation

For many companies, holiday season is synonymous with performance-review season. And chances are, that process will include a self-evaluation. Filling out self-evaluations can be tricky (are you talking up your accomplishments enough? Will your boss agree with your assessment of your performance?), but they don't have to be painful. Read on for five tips to help you shine on your self-evaluation.

  1. Be realistic: Try to evaluate yourself as objectively as possible, and think about your performance in the context of your job description. Remember that simply fulfilling the requirements of your position doesn't necessarily mean you're blowing your boss's expectations out of the water. At the same time, be sure to give yourself credit where credit is due; performance reviews aren't the time for false modesty.
  2. Be specific: Sweeping statements about your job performance won't get you very far in a self-evaluation. For every accomplishment or strength you mention, have a specific example to back it up.
  3. Be honest: As tempting as it may be to overstate your accomplishments or take more credit for a project than you really earned, doing so will only come back to bite you. Be truthful about both your strengths and your weaknesses when evaluating yourself.
  4. Be clear: Most self-evals will ask about your goals for the coming year; figure out what those goals are and state them clearly. If you're interested in taking on more responsibility, describe exactly what you have in mind. If you want to grow within the company, be clear about how you see that happening.
  5. Be constructive: If you've had an issue with your manager or your workload, it's OK to mention it here, as long as you do it the right way. Phrase your concerns as diplomatically as you can, and offer up a potential solution if possible — don't just turn it into a complaint fest.