What’s the best way to ace your next food & beverage performance review?

Certainly, you need to do your job well throughout the year; but adequate job performance isn’t enough.  To guarantee a stellar review that lands you the promotion, raise or extra perks you want, use these proactive tips from Kinsa Group:

Remember the purposes of your performance review.  Annual evaluations provide an opportunity to highlight what you have done well, identify areas for improvement and outline your plans and goals for the future.  Bear these points in mind as you progress through the year, collecting documentation to support each area.

Plan well in advance.  In fact, you should start planning for your next review the moment you leave your previous one.  Create an accomplishments folder, document or portfolio to keep track of your most ambitious projects and biggest accomplishments.  Keep a detailed calendar of what you’ve achieved, quantifying your results whenever possible (keep track of ways you’ve helped save time, generate revenue, improve processes, save money, etc.).

Include 360-degree feedback.  When most food & beverage professionals think about performance reviews, they typically think about the opinions of those higher-up on the corporate ladder.  If you truly want to give yourself (and your manager) an accurate picture of who you are and how you contribute to the team, gather feedback from those who work with and for you.  Take the initiative to create a safe environment in which co-workers and subordinates can share honest feedback about your performance.  Use their input to spur ideas for future professional development, or to show how you’ve grown over the past 12 months.

Assess your performance against your goals.  Periodically throughout the year, check your progress toward mid- and long-term goals.  If you see that you’re off track, try to determine the reason(s) why – and take corrective action as soon as possible.  On the other hand, if you consistently exceed job requirements and targets throughout the year, prepare to make a case for additional responsibility in your next review.

Consider your last performance review.  If you’ve already been through the review process once with your current employer, note the steps you have taken since then to improve your performance or build on your strengths.  Document how you’ve enhanced your skills and knowledge (e.g., through training courses, on-the-job learning or setting personal challenges), and describe how these initiatives have benefited your performance.

Anticipate potential negative issues.  If you missed a goal, or had an issue with a co-worker or client, keep notes as to why the problem occurred.  Reduce your anxiety by preparing to explain what you learned from the mistake and how you’ll prevent it from happening again.  Should your manager surprise you with unexpected negative feedback, thank him – and ask what he would recommend to help you improve in that area.

Prioritize your information.  As your review date approaches, organize all of the performance documentation you’ve assembled.  Instead of going into the review with a simple bullet list, take the time to prioritize information according to its strategic importance for your career – and the company.

Outline ideas for a new annual plan.  Though this is one of the toughest parts of preparing for a review, it provides a great opportunity to demonstrate the value of your role in a company-wide context and to set yourself apart as an upward-bound professional.  Use the information you’ve gathered throughout the year to lay out a list of three or four annual goals that are measurable, challenging and in-line with your long-term career goals.

Still dreading that performance evaluation?  Maybe you’re in the wrong job!  As a leading food & beverage headhunter, Kinsa can help you confidentially search for the right professional or executive food & beverage job that matches your skills, interests and career aspirations.  For more information on who’s hiring in food & beverage, contact Kinsa Group today.

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