Kiss my Ass…essment

So last week, we got a reminder that our annual performance reviews were coming up, and immediately, I felt dread. A sick feeling in my stomach and a sinking anxiety. The fact is, my review was basically lukewarm. A few areas for improvement, and it was essentially fair to a point, but a gross understatement of what I had done for the company last year, given the ridiculously adverse conditions. I also argued, factually, that my assessment didn’t take into account the January through July period when my current management team was not in place, and that while they could theoretically extrapolate, it wasn’t really what I’d call accurate. More like five-twelfths accurate.

I also felt that the process as a whole was disingenuous – I believe that our management team was given a budget for raises, and that they had to write the reviews based on the small amounts of money they parsed out to each person. In other words, I am definitely a 4 out of 5, but they only had the money to give me a 2.7 out of 5. And that’s fine, but be honest with me. Tell me you don’t have the money and separate that issue from my actual value to the company.

This process last year caused me no less than six weeks of anguish, doubt and ultimately a lot of anger. Even in describing it to you, I revisit a lot of the heartache and physically, it actually makes me feel sick. I remember the day I found out the additional amount I was worth to the company, I made a celebratory dinner representative of that amount: hot dogs, macaroni and cheese and fruit cocktail. I was very, very upset.

I decided when we first got wind of this year’s timeline that this year, I made a decision that I am not going to let it upset me this year. Even though our company does quite well, and I think I deserve to be making significantly more than I am, oh, and I have some data to back that up – well, I don’t think I’ll get a raise that is commensurate with that data.

So for one, I am not going to worry about the monetary outcome of this evaluation. I know what I’m worth, I know I am not making what I am worth. I know that this will not be the process that changes it.

Two: I know that I am proud of the work that I do. I know that I have areas that need to be improved. And I know on a five point scale, what I feel I give to this company. I know that my number will not match the number I receive in my review. I also know that the number I am given will correlate to the amount of money they are prepared to attach to it, and that those numbers are meaningless. I will accept the comments on my performance as feedback to the point at which it remains useful, but I will not base my self-esteem on this assessment.

That said, if the department structure changes to where I am “officially” named as a full-time Trainer, we can review my qualifications and have a separate discussion at that time.

Or, you know…whatever.

I think we all know this is going to eat at me, but I can at least pretend to have a back up plan.

Wish me luck. I’ll need it.