Ever Cried in a Performance Review?

On Sunday, I turned 36. I think I am holding up pretty well, in fact, a coworker this morning said that she would believe 26 if I had told her that. Score one for me, I reckon.You may have wondered where I have been the last few days. Or not. I'll share anyway.On Friday, I had a performance planning meeting with my boss. As is customary, I threw something together very last minute expecting it to be a sign of just how horrible I am at my job that I cannot even concisely put together my own position description or performance goals. ...more
I cried to the Dean, then my contracts professor, after my contracts exam because I'd misread it ...more

Listening for Feedback

Your performance review will often generate feedback. The problem is that it is natural to accept feedback that is consistent with your view of your performance and your self-image, and to reject feedback that is inconsistent. But if you don't know what you don't know and/or your perception of standards and requirements differ from your bosses, you may reject crucial information for your development and success. It is never easy to receive feedback, nor is it often easy for the person giving you the feedback. Here are some tips for taking advantage of this difficult process. ...more

Overestimating Your Capabilities?

David Dunning, Ph.D., professor of psychology at Cornell University explains in a Gallup Management Journal article that most people overestimate their capabilities. If you just had enough time, or started earlier enough, or had the right gear, you too much just play golf like Tiger or tennis like Vanessa or sing like those folks on American Idol; right? A Business Week survey supports Dunning's finding by noting that 90% of American middle managers believed themselves to be in the top 10% of performers. We overestimate our capabilities because: Normally people will claim credit for their success and blame other people or conditions for their failures. As a consequence, the overall sense is one of success. Feedback from others is often couched in softened terms, may be incomplete or less than honest, and may well not be understood or heard. Frequently people have no way to know how something could have been done differently or better; they are unconsciously incompetent. Confidence is energizing and can bring its own rewards. Identifying the blind spots and acting on them can be equally rewarding. Whether with your boss at annual performance appraisal time, with trusted peers, or with an external coach, asking for feedback remains a key step in identifying improvement areas that you just cannot see. Today's conventional wisdom suggests that you should build on your strengths. That's very true, but without awareness of our weaknesses and finding ways to mitigate them, you may be winning a battle and losing the war. Strong leadership requires that you set high expectations for yourself and others, and demonstrate the ability for continuous learning and growth. Executive coaching is a tool that supports the identification of blind spots and the development of successful behaviors and skills. To learn more about this investment in your career and the careers of your employees, contact me at Sherry@ReadSolutionsGroup.com . ...more