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September 8, 2023

Want to Ace Your Annual Review? Do This NOW.

Have you ever heard of the 80/20 rule? Per Investopedia:

The 80-20 rule, also known as the Pareto Principle, is a familiar saying that asserts that 80% of outcomes (or outputs) result from 20% of all causes (or inputs) for any given event.

When it comes to preparing for your performance review, there are a lot of things you can do. That said, I’m going to bet that getting ready for a performance evaluation isn’t on your list of Top 10 Ways to Spend My Time, so it helps to get clear on that 20%.

Here’s the 20%: an end of week email that you’ll spend about 10 minutes a week creating, and will feed into your performance review, eliminating all the extra preparation.

For example:

Hi Robin,

Happy Friday! I hope you’re about to head out for the weekend. Before I log off, I wanted to share what we accomplished this week and priorities for next week.

What I accomplished this week:
⬥ Incorporated client feedback and launched customer survey ahead of the deadline
⬥ Created survey cutter, which will allow us to quickly populate the client dashboard to show progress and generate buy-in for our team’s work
⬥ Analyzed preliminary data, catching ~100 robo responses – I negotiated with the survey vendor and was refunded for those responses, saving our team ~$12,500

Priorities for next week:
⬥ Reach 10,000 responses and close survey
⬥ Update slides in our final presentation deck and refresh the client’s dashboard with latest results

Please let me know if I need to be thinking about anything differently and have a great weekend!

Imagine sending a note like this to your boss every Friday morning. You’re signaling that you’re on top of your work. You’re creating an invitation for your manager to pass on new, relevant information. You’re also building up sound bites for your review. Rather than sitting down with a blank sheet of paper trying to remember what you’ve accomplished over the past year, you can just search your outbox for “end of week message” and boom!

Everything you need, all in one place.

Not to mention you’ve also given your boss a shortcut. No one can speak to what you’ve accomplished better than you can, and when your manager is putting together your review, he/she/they also have a leg up: they can just search for your end of week messages and use them as a first draft. Now the wins you’ve teed up, in your own words, are feeding directly into your review. Voila!

Pro tip: This is especially powerful when you talk about your wins relationally, using these key phrases.



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