Why is Self Evaluation Important for Development?

Megan Thompson · May 14, 2021

The importance of self evaluation cannot be understated. Engagement, development, wellbeing and motivation are all improved when employees have the opportunity to reflect and evaluate themselves.

What is self evaluation?

An employee self evaluation is a review of your performance and experience at work. It is an opportunity for employees to honestly document and examine how they feel about their role and their work. It is a self-diagnostic skill that helps employees monitor their own skills and work, identify any vulnerabilities and strengths, and find solutions.

What is the main purpose?reflective self assessment

At its least effective, self evaluation is a task assigned to unenthused employees as part of an annual performance review. But at its most effective, self evaluation can help employees build a path for development at your organisation and align their personal and professional goals with their employer.

By encouraging employees to regularly reflect on how they really feel, rather than scrambling to remember everything they’ve done in the last year, self evaluation allows employees to take control of their everyday workplace experience. Voicing their feelings, and tuning into the challenges they face empowers employees to provide honest insights and make informed, effective decisions.

One of the main purposes of self evaluation is to give individuals freedom and accountability in their role.

Strengths of self evaluation

Self evaluation is a constructive skill for us as humans, both as employees and in our daily lives. There are many strengths of self evaluation, but the most critical strength is that it allows employees to actively participate in their current role and in their future.

A huge strength of self evaluation is that your people can honestly assess their own skills, talents and successes, but also identify the areas they need to improve from a more practical and helpful perspective. By contrast, an environment where employees are just evaluated by their managers can stifle personal accountability and development.

Setting personal self-evaluation goals encourages employees to grow and develop both personally and professionally, and is therefore an ideal tool for supporting 1-on-1 meetings and driving conversations between employees and managers.

How to use a reflective self assessment in regular 1-on-1s

In recent years, many companies have done away with the annual review in favour of ongoing regular feedback. The weekly/bi-weekly 1-on-1 meetings are far more effective, and favourable for both employees and managers when done correctly.

Not only does this help employees, but managers can also gain a broader understanding of their people’s needs. Getting an insight into how your people view their performance can also help identify strengths and weaknesses you might not have previously known about.

Take WeThrive’s client FSCS, who utilised our non-anonymous survey to identify employees struggling with their mental health during the pandemic. The results identified 10% of people with low scoring wellbeing areas, and FSCS immediately offered additional weekly support with a mental health first aider for each person affected. Without taking a self evaluation approach, these employees may have been unable to communicate their challenges and get the support they needed.

Imagine going into a 1-on-1 meeting where your employees know exactly where they’re struggling. Time is spent far more effectively using a reflective self assessment as a basis for guiding these conversations. For example, if Kevin in accounting runs his bi-weekly self evaluation and identifies that he’s feeling particularly disconnected from his team, coming to a quick solution is easy.

This is one of the many reasons why a reflective self assessment must be more than an annual process. Without employees actively and continuously reflecting on their experiences, problems can be left to fester and grow. FSCS’s quick-response solution shows the huge importance of self evaluation as an ongoing part of the employee experience.

reflective self assessmentImportance of self evaluation for development

Most employees have career- or development-based goals they hope to achieve. From an internal promotion to learning a new skill-set, reaching these goals requires ongoing reflection. While it can be helpful to get insight from a manager, employees often get much further when they’re in the driving seat.

Want to know where your employees would benefit from training? A self evaluation can identify where employees think they need additional skills or knowledge, and where they see themselves in the future.

Discover more in our personal and professional development guide.

Run a free self evaluation in five minutes

WeThrive Bubbles are the ultimate self evaluation tool for your people. Employees get a personal space to run self-diagnostic surveys, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and get instant feedback and recommendations.

Get every 1-2-1 and employee development plan on the right track with WeThrive.

Why not try the Bubble survey for free now? Get an instant self evaluation report and see how WeThrive can support your employees.