Having a performance review is scary, and everyone always wants them to be good. Now that you’ve had your first bad review, you’re well acquainted with the variety of feelings that they cause. You might feel embarrassed, shocked, fear, disappointed, angry, or you might feel like your job is in jeopardy. Take a breath, because it’s not that bad. You can take negative reviews and turn them into positive energy. Here are some tips.
It’s natural to put your guard up to protect your ego by ignoring what your boss said in the review, but resist the urge. Take the time to feel the negative emotions that come with a poor review, because it can motivate you to do better the next time. Often, pain is so powerful that it keeps you from making the same mistakes. So, go ahead and feel sad, just make sure to do it at home.
Aim for Getting Some Perspective
Now that you’ve allowed yourself time to feel bummed, you need to also take the time to step back and get some perspective. No one enjoys getting negative feedback from their boss, even more so if it was delivered in a tacky manner. However, gaining perspective and teaching yourself how to look at it objectively is going to cause you to benefit from it.
Career coaches suggest taking the time to process it if you have a hard time moving past the negative emotions. They also recommend writing down thoughts and questions that you can present to your boss during your next meeting.
Set Clear Goals
Now that you know the areas you need to work on, set some goals for yourself. Ensure that they are challenging, but attainable by your next review. Consult with your boss to make sure that you’re on their advised track and using their feedback positively and correctly.
Ask for Consistent Feedback
Feedback is a great thing to have, and if you do want to improve after getting a negative review, it’s a good idea to ask your boss to check in consistently over a few months. The vital information that you receive is going to help you meet your goals, and it’s also going to show your boss and your colleagues that you have a strong desire to improve.
Rebuild Other Relationships
Your colleagues can be a massive influence regarding repairing your reputation. It’s important to be intentional when you are improving your relationship with co-workers. As an example, if your review stated that you are unreliable in team projects, create a system that allows you to be more responsive to co-worker’s deadlines.
You can advise your colleagues about what you’re working on, and give them a heads up that you want to be a better team player. When you are honest about your weakness, it builds trust, and your team is more likely to notice the positive changes and effort that you’re making. It also adds “peer pressure” on you to keep you in check on track.
Changing behaviors can take a while for people to notice. There is a term called confirmatory bias that causes people to be more likely to confirm only their beliefs rather than things they don’t believe. As an example, if you’re considered the office hothead, people are still going to see you as one even if you’ve kept your cool. You need to be diligent and consistent when trying to change the way others see you. Consider the fact that it’s going to take time, but all good things come to those who wait.
Setbacks such as negative performance reviews happen, and it’s not the end of the world. Many successful people have had their fair share of negative reviews. You need to decide to turn the failure into the muse that encourages you to develop professionally. Commit, and your next review is going to leave you feeling amazing.