It may not be clear to those who of us who don’t enjoy talking about ourselves, but there are many benefits of self evaluation and assessment. Often if you dread your annual performance review, you are not alone. The chances are that your manager is equally unenthusiastic about the meeting. Numerous studies in the last decade have found that managers and employees alike are sick of the annual charade. Companies are under increasing pressure to up their talent management efforts.
The reward-punishment structure of the annual review saps morale. Managers hate conducting them and employees dread them. So, what’s the alternative?
Self-evaluation and more regular discussions are the new meaningful and resourceful way of managing employee reviews. In recent years, many companies have ditched the annual appraisal in favour of more regular continuous feedback. The evolution of self-evaluation has been a big part of this shift. And now self-assessment is proving far more successful in its outcomes than the hated annual review.
The emphasis has shifted from past performance to what employees need to develop and grow. Self-assessment has been integral to this change.
Need further convincing? Here’s the lowdown on the benefits of self-evaluation and assessment.
First up, what is it?
What is self-evaluation?
Simply put, self-evaluation is the ability to examine yourself to find out how much progress you have made. It requires employees to monitor their own abilities and evaluate strengths and weaknesses. It puts employees largely in charge of their own development.
A self-evaluation means considering questions such as:
- Where have you excelled?
- What achievements are you most proud of?
- Where do you feel you need more support?
- What goals do you wish you could have accomplished?
- What would help you to accomplish these goals?
- What do you most like about your job?
- What do you most dislike about your job?
- What improvements could be made to make your role easier?
- What components of your job would you like to eliminate and why?
- What career goals to you hope to accomplish in the next three years?
These are the kind of questions included in a self-evaluation – ones that prompt thought about performance. The purpose of a self-assessment is to help an individual know the extent of their abilities and to improve upon them. It can be daunting to an employee when they first start self-evaluating, but over time it becomes more natural.
There are many advantages of self-evaluation and assessment to both staff and employers/managers.
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What are the benefits of self-evaluation in the workplace for employees?
Through self-assessment, employees can:
- Feel more engaged in the appraisal process
- Gain greater insights and set future goals for improvement
- Feel more confident about their abilities
- Enhance capacity building (learn to make corrections quickly)
- Select training programmes that are most suited to needs
- Develop an inquiring mind for problem solving
- Become more accountable
- Feel more valued
- Feel more motivated to learn new skills
Importantly, when employees feel heard through the self-evaluation process, they are more likely to listen to feedback from their managers. The appraisal process becomes much more of a two-way discussion when it revolves around regular self-evaluation.
One of the most important aspects of self-assessment to employees is the autonomy it provides. The process discourages micromanagement from team leaders, which we all know is a stifling drain on productivity. Employees who self-evaluate and are free to make their own choices about how they go about their responsibilities are happier, more committed, more productive and more loyal.
What are the benefits of self-evaluation and assessment in the workplace for managers?
Employers and managers benefit greatly from employee self-assessment. When an employee self-evaluates, managers are able to gain insights into how employees feel about their work and how they fit into their team. They can get a real sense of how employees view their jobs. It highlights misunderstandings and employees also get to feedback to managers what motivates them.
It gives business owners and managers a much broader perspective to work with and helps them to see the employees’ side of the story – it’s inevitable that there will be some differences between the view of an employee and the person who manages them. But many great ideas about how to resolve productivity hitches can come from employees.
When managers have a clear picture of what makes an employee tick, they can incentivise individually to help each team member achieve the goals they have set themselves. It means managers can direct tasks in the future that play to a person’s strengths and ensure training and support is put in place to address weaknesses.
The biggest benefit for employers is the confidence it gives to employees. The continual process of self-assessment by employees and subsequent individual growth is hugely valuable to all.
Self-assessment and continual feedback contribute hugely to a culture of trust and engagement – the linchpin of business success.
The general benefits of self-evaluation and assessment
Self-reflection happens all the time in everyday life. We do this from childhood – it’s how we learn and grow. In education, it is increasingly utilised as a valuable learning tool. As we move into adulthood, the process of self-reflection often isn’t given a second thought, but self-reflective practices, such as meditation and mindfulness are becoming much more common and are lauded by many successful business leaders all over the world.
There’s a slight difference between self-reflection and self-evaluation in the workplace, but the principles are the same – it’s all about growth. While self-reflection in everyday life seeks insight into behaviour and values for personal growth, self-evaluation at work is used to study performance in order to improve it.
Both seek a deeper understanding of self and look at ways to move forward.
There are scores of studies on the value of self-reflection. A study by the Harvard Business School, for example, confirms a powerful connection between learning and reflection. It found the effect of reflection on learning is mediated by greater perceived ability to achieve a goal. American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer John Dewey said: “We do not learn from experience … we learn from reflecting on experience.”
The advantages of self-evaluation are plain to be seen. But it’s not always so easy to implement. It takes time to coach employees to become used to the idea – some find it easy while others cringe at the thought of self-assessment.
That’s where WeThrive can help. We offer a complete employee experience platform that will help you and your employees learn what is and isn’t working in the workplace. Our on-demand Bubble surveys get to the route of any problems and encourage self-reflective practices. The WeThrive action plans ensure you and everyone in your team get the tools they need to thrive at work.
We help businesses benefit from the advantages of self-evaluation. Are you ready to reap the benefits of self-assessment?
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