7 tricks of the trade to ace your appraisal


When it comes to handling your annual performance review, you probably already know that preparation is king. But how can you really take control of the session to showcase yourself to your line manager as someone crucial to the success of your organisation? Whether you want to highlight a problem, ask for a promotion or simply walk out with the best possible result, these tips from everywomanClub members will set you on the right path.

Ruth Huddleston, Author and Publishing Consultant

If you are experiencing problems at work, take some time to think them through for yourself and come up with some possible solutions before you are presented with an alternative interpretation and a solution you might not like!

If you think you are not being challenged enough, think of ways in which you can help the business to grow and research areas or new ways of working you could offer to explore (and ultimately take responsibility for). Work with your manager, don’t fight her! Everyone is ultimately there to help the company and you will do best if you are co-operative and open-minded. And don’t use the opportunity to have a go at your colleagues!

Anna Lee, Co-founder, Storm watches

Try and put things into practice that would give you some standout over and above your colleagues. Summarise what you think you have achieved so that you can ensure that this has been noted. Go the extra mile; going beyond the call of duty usually gets noticed!

Jacqueline de Rojas, Non-Executive Director, Home Retail Group; Board Member, techUK

Be authentic and open about your challenges and the personal risks you have taken. Offer examples of courage, people management and contribution to teamwork. These are the skills I look for in people who really embrace leadership.

Laura Reeves, Managing Director, Caremark MidSurrey

Too many people go into their performance reviews under-prepared. You should always have had the opportunity to see your appraisers comments which will give you time to consider your response.  Always have lots of examples to hand to show what a valued member of the company you are – and have answers ready to address any areas that have been identified as needing improvement. 

Katrina Roberts, ‎Vice President – Head of European Technologies, American Express

Give clear examples of successes and what leadership traits you displayed to achieve them and don’t be afraid to admit you have development opportunities as well with clearly actionable plans to address.

Lyn Grobler, VP and CIO for Corporate Functions, BP

Don’t wait for the performance review; you need to find a way to showcase what you and your team have achieved during the year. A boss of mine once called these “packaging up gifts for your manager”, i.e. think about what you have achieved that will show your boss in a good light and then give him or her the succinct information that will help them demonstrate that. Do this at appropriate moments during the year so that by the time you come to the appraisal nothing is new news to your manager.



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