The Job Performance Review

A confession that probably won’t shock you: I used to turn into a pile of jelly each year when it was time for the job performance review most employed people endure every 12 months.

Mood music:

I bring this up because my annual review is Monday. Today I’m supposed to turn in my self-evaluation. And I feel an absolute lack of drama about it.

Overconfidence? Perhaps.

Apathy? Definitely not.

It’s just another indication of where my head is today compared to a few years ago.

It all goes back to the habit I used to have of trying to please everyone. I wanted to be seen as the golden boy in any job I took on. I took constructive criticism as a stab to the gut — a sign that nobody liked me and I was good for nothing.

This feeling really took on monstrous proportions when I worked for TechTarget as senior news writer for TechTarget is very big on goal setting and having different teams compete with each other. That’s really not a bad thing, but for me — a complete mess of OCD, fear and anxiety at the time — it was like poison.

Every December, as review time drew closer, I’d become a nervous wreck, unable to think about anything but how I would do on the review. Juicing up my sorry state even further was that December was award-submission time. TechTarget gives out these awards called the Bull’s-Eye. I felt enormous pressure to win at least two a year. I wrote about this sorry phenomenon in an earlier post called “The Agony Of Awards.”

It would become just another bullet point on the long list of things I hated about the Christmas season.

Like many of the things that drove my fear and anxiety, the review-time breakdown stopped at some point. I can’t exactly remember the year. Like everything else, I chalk it up to years of therapy, medication and spiritual growth on the path to getting my OCD under control.

So now I sit here, ready to write up my self evaluation. I’m thinking of just writing “I am awesome. Give me more money.”

That might be a career-limiting thing to do, though, so I will play it straight.

I just got a promotion and a raise. Playing it straight is the least I could do.


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