Your manager’s performance review

By Scot Herrick | Job Performance

Dec 19

The ReviewIt is the end of the year and, for most employees, time for the dreaded performance review. While most of us are focused on our review, how many of you do a formal review of your manager? Not for publication, of course. Instead, how good has your manager been for your work, job and career?

Since your manager is a significant source of influence on your career, it only makes sense that you do an evaluation. It is, after all, your career and income we’re talking about here.

7 manager review questions to answer

Does your manager know your accomplishments?

Without the ability to state your accomplishments for the year, your manager won’t be able to defend your performance review rating in manager meetings where budget and rankings are determined. If your manager isn’t willing to defend your realm, you’ll lose. And you did show your business accomplishments backed up by numbers when it came time for your self review, didn’t you?

Does your manager know your work history?

After having worked at my last gig for three years (out of decades of my career), I applied for a position within the management group essentially changing one manager for another higher level manager.

In the two interviews I had, both the hiring manager and their team interviews basically said, “oh, we know all about your work.”

But, no they didn’t. I went through several positions at my previous gig that directly applied to the position I was interviewing for with them. They had no idea.

Is your manager results or time oriented?

There’s a big difference in this answer. Results-only managers focus on the work and not how you spend your time. Who wants a manager who decides your performance review rating based on sitting at your desk “looking busy” when there is nothing to do? There’s a reason results count.

Rank your manager on your manager’s team

Your manager reports to some other manager. And your manager is part of that manager’s team. If your manager is one of eight people reporting to the manager two levels up from you, where do you think your manager ranks? One? Five? Eight? Why?

Is your manager plugged in?

As in, plugged into the events of the company. What is happening in the company. What’s coming up for the department and the company.

More distinctly: can you tell if your manager is plugged in and holds confidences or is your manager plugged in (or not) and gossiping in the halls about what is happening? Holding confidences as a manager is critical to success (and for employees, too). If a manager can’t keep a confidence, whatever you tell your manager will be told to the world.

Your manager’s communication performance

Does your manager consistently review your performance or just when the review comes out? Does your manager tell you and the group what the current situation is with the company and the projects being worked without revealing confidences? Does your manager excel at corporate speak or does plain language rule?

History of promotion and reward

If your manager promoted a person, was that person deserving or not? Why? Was it based on results and connections or was it simply a way to promote a buddy?

Are rewards handed out based on real work or the time spent in the office?

The review

I can’t tell you how to score the review or whether it makes sense to stay or leave based on the review. But doing a review of your manager gives you a point in the sand to evaluate performance that affects your career.

Any other points to the review? Which of these is most important to you?

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About the Author

Scot Herrick is the author of “I’ve Landed My Dream Job–Now What???” and owner of Cube Rules, LLC. Scot has a long history of management and individual contribution in multiple Fortune 100 corporations.