How to Write a Self Evaluation (With Examples)

how to write a paper about self evaluation

Given a choice between cleaning the office microwave and writing a self evaluation, most people would probably grab the all-purpose cleaner and a roll of paper towels.

Self evaluations are performance assessments that bring you and your manager together to rate your performance over a given time span (quarterly, semi-annually, annually) either using a scale (one to 10 or one to five) or by answering open-ended questions. You complete the evaluation and so does your manager. During the performance review , the two of you compare notes to arrive at a final evaluation.

Writing about yourself, especially if those words are going to be part of your permanent work record, can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. In fact, self evaluations give you a voice in your performance review , and they’re opportunities to outline your career goals and get help in reaching them.

What Is an Employee Self Evaluation?

Workplace employee self evaluations can be traced back to management theorist Douglas McGregor, author of the groundbreaking 1960 book The Human Side of Enterprise . McGregor believed that employees enjoy work, are intrinsically motivated to work and have the self-direction and ambition to do so.

In a 1957 Harvard Business Review article, McGregor presented self evaluations as a way to give employees and managers a way to work together to judge workplace performance, rather than handing a manager total control. “Managers are uncomfortable when they are put in the position of ‘playing God,’” he wrote.

Today, the goal of self evaluations is twofold, according to Leslie Mizerak, an executive coach at edtech company NimblyWise . They give managers an understanding of where their employees think they are in relation to their goals, and they give employees a voice that is heard and documented.

Below, we’ll examine self evaluation examples, types of self assessments, why companies use self evaluations and how both employees and managers can complete them successfully.

More on Self Evaluations Self-Evaluations Make Stronger Leaders. Here’s How to Write One.

Benefits of Self Evaluations 

Academic literature indicates that employees are more satisfied with evaluations that involve two-way communication and encourage a conversation between manager and employee, according to Thomas Begley, professor of management at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute . 

The thing is, employees have to trust that the process is fair, Begley added. If they believe it is, and they’re treated fairly and respectfully during the process, employees react positively to self evaluations. “If unfair, they lose trust in the manager and process, become disgruntled and are more likely to leave the organization,” Begley said.

Self evaluations might seem as a way to shift the burden of the review to the employee from the manager, but in reality, they benefit both.

“Self evaluations enable employees to see their work in its entirety,” Jill Bowman, director of people at fintech company Octane , said. “They ensure that employees reflect on their high points throughout the entire year and to assess their progress towards achieving predetermined objectives and goals.” 

Some companies see tangible results from self evaluations. For example, Smarty , an address-verification company, enjoys low staff turnover, said Rob Green, chief revenue officer. The self-evaluation method, coupled with a strong focus on a communication-based corporate culture, has resulted in a 97 percent retention rate, Green said.

Since self evaluations are inherently reflective, they allow employees to identify and examine their strengths and weaknesses. When identifying strengths, employees will be able to use specific metrics and examples from their work to demonstrate their value. This helps employees both know their worth to an organization and what they still have left to learn. 

For Bowman, employee self assessments also help managers more accurately remember each employee’s accomplishments. 

“As many managers often have numerous direct reports, it provides a useful summary of the achievements of each member,” Bowman said. “Self-evaluations also help account for performance across the full year as opposed to just the most recent tasks and accomplishments that are likely still top of mind.”

It may seem obvious, but self assessments also help prepare both employees and managers for performance reviews. Completing a self evaluation can help guide the conversation in a structured, but meaningful, way. It also helps both parties get an idea of what needs to be discussed during a performance review, so neither feels caught off guard by the conversation.

Types of Self Evaluations

Self evaluations come in several varieties. One involves open-ended questions or statements asking employees to list accomplishments, setbacks and goals . Another gives a list of statements where employees are asked to rate themselves on a scale of one to five or one to ten (generally the higher the number, the more favorable the rating). Hybrid evaluations combine the two. Each approach has its own set of pros and cons to consider.

Open-ended Question Self Evaluation

Open-ended questions can vary from company to company and can serve different purposes, depending on the angle of the question. The goal of open-ended questions is generally the same: to get employees thinking deeply about their work, how they’ve accomplished their goals and where they need to improve. 

Open-ended questions allow employees a true voice in the process, whereas “self ratings” can sometimes be unfair , Fresia Jackson, lead research people scientist at Culture Amp , said. 

With open-ended questions, employees tend to be more forgiving with themselves, which can be both good and bad. Whatever result open ended questions bring about, they typically offer more fodder for discussion between employees and managers.  

Rating Self Evaluation 

Rating self evaluation systems vary widely too. For instance, Smarty uses a tool called 3A+. Unlike most self evaluations, this one calls for employees and managers to sit down and complete the evaluation together, at the same time. Employees rate themselves from 3, 2 or 1 (three being the best) on their capability in their role; A, B or C on their helpfulness to others, and plus or minus on their “diligence and focus” in their role. Managers rate the employees using the same scale. A “perfect” score would be 3A+, while an employee who needs some TLC would rate 2B-.

At the performance evaluation meeting, managers and employees compare their ratings, and employees ask for feedback on how they can improve, Susan Young, human resources manager at Smarty , said.

Young likes the approach, developed by management company Arbinger , because the second part of the evaluation acknowledges that employees don’t work in a silo, and that their actions affect others. “It’s a win-win,” Young said.

But rating systems can have their challenges that are often rooted in bias. For example, women are more likely to rate themselves lower than men. People from individualistic cultures, which emphasize individuals over community, will rate themselves higher than people from collectivist cultures, which place a premium on the group rather than the individual, Jackson said.

Hybrid Self Evaluations

Hybrid self evaluations, such as the ones from the Society for Human Resource Management , include a rating scale where employees score themselves one through five on skills including project management, collaboration and teamwork and communication. Here’s an example of some questions that might be asked in a hybrid self evaluation:

Since the last appraisal period, have you successfully performed any new tasks or additional duties outside the scope of your regular responsibilities? If so, please specify.

What activities have you initiated, or actively participated in, to encourage camaraderie and teamwork within your group and/or office? What was the result?

Describe areas you feel require improvement in terms of your professional capabilities. List the steps you plan to take and/or the resources you need to accomplish this.

Identify two career goals for the coming year and indicate how you plan to accomplish them.

Self-Evaluation Questions for Performance Reviews

If you’ve never done a self evaluation, or if you just need a refresher before your next performance review, looking over some examples of self evaluation questions — like the ones below — can be a helpful starting point. They provide a sense of what to expect from your next self evaluation, and they may even help you craft your answers (or help you write your next round of questions, if you’re a manager). 

Self Evaluation Questions for Performance Reviews

These are some questions commonly found in a semi-annual or annual performance review:

Self Evaluation Questions for Career Planning and Growth 

Questions on this type of evaluation tend to focus on an employee’s goals for their job and career:

Self Evaluation Questions for Performance and Career Goals

This type of self evaluation puts a premium on career goals and how well employees meet them:

More on Career Development How to Set Professional Goals

How to Write a Self Evaluation

The ability to write a self evaluation is a critical career skill, said Richard Hawkes, CEO and founder of Growth River , a leadership and management consulting company. 

“Self evaluations give you a platform to influence your manager and in many cases, reframe the nature of the relationship with your manager,” Hawkes said. “And all results in business happen in the context of relationships.”

6 Tips for Writing a Self Evaluation

In Hawkes’ estimation, the ability to write a comprehensive self evaluation becomes a career tool and a life tool. 

Below are some tips from Hawkes and others on how to complete a self evaluation.

 Track Your Work

Daily or weekly tracking of your work can help you keep track of your progress and also prevent last-minute “what on earth did I do the last six months?” panic at performance evaluation time, said Peter Griscom, CEO at New York-based Tradefluence , which makes a stock-picking app. “Strip down the questions to two or three, and just ask yourself, ‘How well did I communicate today?’ ‘How well did I solve problems today?’ ‘What have I achieved today?’” Griscom said. 

“Get in the habit of writing those things out and keeping track and over time, that will help you get very comfortable with self evaluations and understand the purpose behind them,” he said, adding that he’s done just that over his career in tech.

Take Your Time

“It’s not something you can do in 15 minutes,” Hawkes said. “Slow down, take time and let your objectives stew a little bit.” Write a first draft as soon as possible after getting the email or message from your manager. Let it sit for a few days and then return to it to polish and revise.

Griscom remembers his first self evaluation, asked of him when he was head of product at a consumer-goods company. He remembers wondering whether he had to be overly brutal on himself, deciding how to best answer the questions, and trying to figure out how the answers would affect his career. “I think I over-thought it the first time,” he said.

Rather than plague himself with questions, he asked his manager, the CFO of the company, for guidance. “He said, ‘just give me your honest answers; there is no right or wrong,’” Griscom recalled. So Griscom answered the questions as accurately as he could. “What came out of it was really valuable, because it gave me a chance to reflect on my own achievements and think about where I can improve,” he said. “It forced me to do the thinking instead of just accepting feedback.”  

Tout Your Wins

If your boss has a handful of direct reports, chances are good they haven’t noticed each of your shining moments during a review period. This is your chance to spotlight yourself. Quotas exceeded, projects finished ahead of schedule, fruitful mentoring relationships, processes streamlined — whatever you’ve done, share it, and don’t be shy about it, said Alexandra Phillips , a leadership and management coach. Women, especially, tend not to share achievements and accomplishments as loudly or often as they should, Phillips said. “Make sure your manager has a good sense of where you’ve had those wins, large and small, because sometimes they can fly under the radar,” she added.

More on Career Development Long-Term Career Goals: How to Set a Successful Development Plan

Admit Weaknesses (and How You’ve Grown From Them)

If you’ve made a whopper mistake since your past review, mention it — and be sure to discuss what you’ve learned from it. Chances are good your manager knows you made a mistake, and bringing it up gives you the opportunity to provide more context to the situation. “It’s the perfect time to do so,” Culture Amp ’s Jackson said. 

Acknowledge Where You Can Improve

When you’re meeting with your manager, listen to what they say, both positive and negative. And be prepared for your manager to point out a few areas for improvement. This tension point is where career growth happens. “If you want something,” whether it’s a promotion or move to another department, “you need to know how to get there,” said Phillips. Just as people find it hard to brag, some find it hard to acknowledge their weaknesses. Knowing your weaknesses, “you can make some personal choices as to how to potentially bolster those spaces.” 

Get a Second Opinion

Share a draft with a person you trust, whether it’s your partner or a colleague, advised Jackson. It’s a good way to have someone else weigh in, especially if you have difficulty bragging about yourself, she said. Plus, an extra set of eyes can help spot typos and grammatical errors. 

Self Evaluation Examples and Templates Answers

Still not sure what to do when you put pen to paper? Here are six open-ended questions from a sample self evaluation from the Society for Human Resource Management, as well as example answers you can use to prepare for your own self evaluation.

List your most significant accomplishments or contributions since last year. How do these achievements align with the goals/objectives outlined in your last review?

How to answer with positive results: In the past year, I successfully led our team in finishing [project A]. I was instrumental in finding solutions to several project challenges, among them [X, Y and Z]. When Tom left the company unexpectedly, I was able to cover his basic tasks until a replacement was hired, thus keeping our team on track to meet KPIs. 

I feel the above accomplishments demonstrate that I have taken more of a leadership role in our department, a move that we discussed during my last performance review.

How to answer with ways to improve: Although I didn’t meet all of my goals in the last year, I am working on improving this by changing my workflow and holding myself accountable. I am currently working to meet my goals by doing [X, Y and Z] and I plan to have [project A] completed by [steps here]. I believe that I will be able to correct my performance through these actionable steps. 

How to answer with positive results: Yes. I have established mentoring relationships with one of the younger members of our team, as well as with a more seasoned person in another department. I have also successfully taken over the monthly all-hands meeting in our team, trimming meeting time to 30 minutes from an hour and establishing clear agendas and expectations for each meeting. Again, I feel these align with my goal to become more of a leader.

How to answer with ways to improve: Since the last review period, I focused my efforts on improving my communication with our team, meeting my goals consistently and fostering relationships with leaders in other departments. Over the next six months, I plan on breaking out of my comfort zone by accomplishing [X, Y and Z]. 

How to answer with positive results: I launched the “No More Panicked Mondays” program to help on-site and remote colleagues make Mondays more productive. The initiative includes segmenting the day into 25-minute parts to answer emails, get caught up on direct messages, sketch out to-do lists and otherwise plan for the week ahead. NMPM also includes a 15-minute “Weekend Update” around lunch time, during which staff shares weekend activities. Attendance was slow at first but has picked up to nearly 90 percent participation. The result overall for the initiative is more of the team signs on to direct messages earlier in the day, on average 9:15 a.m. instead of the previous 10 a.m., and anecdotally, the team seems more enthusiastic about the week. I plan to conduct a survey later this month to get team input on how we can change up the initiative.

How to answer with ways to improve: Although I haven’t had the chance to lead any new initiatives since I got hired, I recently had an idea for [A] and wanted to run it by you. Do you think this would be beneficial to our team? I would love to take charge of a program like this. 

Describe your professional development activities since last year, such as offsite seminars/classes (specify if self-directed or required by your supervisor), onsite training, peer training, management coaching or mentoring, on-the-job experience, exposure to challenging projects, other—please describe.

How to answer with positive results: I completed a class on SEO best practices and shared what I learned from the seminar during a lunch-and-learn with my teammates. I took on a pro-bono website development project for a local nonprofit, which gave me a new look at website challenges for different types of organizations. I also, as mentioned above, started two new mentoring relationships.

How to answer with ways to improve: This is something I have been thinking about but would like a little guidance with. I would love to hear what others have done in the past to help me find my footing. I am eager to learn more about [A] and [B] and would like to hear your thoughts on which courses or seminars you might recommend. 

I feel I could do better at moving projects off my desk and on to the next person without overthinking them or sweating details that are not mine to sweat; in this regard I could trust my teammates more. I plan to enlist your help with this and ask for a weekly 15-minute one-on-one meeting to do so.

One is a promotion to senior project manager, which I plan to reach by continuing to show leadership skills on the team. Another is that I’d like to be seen as a real resource for the organization, and plan to volunteer for the committee to update the standards and practices handbook.  

More on Career Development How to Find the Right Mentor — and How to Be One

How Should Managers Approach Self Evaluations?

It’s clear here that self evaluations, as a type of performance review, are more employee- than manager-driven. That said, managers are a key ingredient in this process, and the way managers handle self evaluations determines much about how useful they are and how well employees respond to them.

To make sure they’re as effective as possible, consider these suggestions from Elisabeth Duncan, vice president of human resources and Adam Kanouse, chief technology officer at Evive , a provider of IT systems and platforms for HR teams.

Train Managers on How to Use Evaluations

“If you don’t, there’s no point in doing them, because the manager is going to be the one driving the conversations,” Duncan said. “Without training, the (evaluations) will be a checkbox and not meaningful.”

Don’t Use Ratings Formulaically

The results of self evaluations that employ a scale (say, one to five) can vary wildly, as one manager’s three is another manager’s five. Use the scale to identify and address discrepancies between the manager’s and employee’s answers, not to decide on raises or promotions across the company. 

Hold Self Evaluations Often

They work best as career-development tools if they’re held semi-annually, quarterly or even more often. “It’s about an ongoing, consistent conversation,” Duncan said. 

Tailor Them for Each Department

Competencies in sales very likely differ from competencies in tech, marketing and other departments. Competencies for junior-level employees probably differ wildly from those for senior managers. Self evaluations tailored to different employee populations will be more effective, and fairer. 

Stress that the Rating Is Just the Start

The rating or the open-ended questions are the beginning of the evaluation process; they are not the process itself. “These are tools to trigger a conversation,” Duncan said. 

Overall, think of self evaluations as a way to engage with your manager and your work in a way that furthers your career. Embrace the self evaluation, get good at writing them, and in no time at all, you’ll find they’re more productive — and definitely more fun — than scrubbing the office microwave.  

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Tips for Writing a Strong Self-Evaluation — Plus Examples to Make Yours Shine

how to write a paper about self evaluation

When it comes to performance management — the overarching system, strategy, and process organizations use to evaluate, improve , and manage employee performance — companies often focus most on performance appraisals. In this process, managers must take the time to reflect honestly and think critically about an employee’s contributions in order to conduct a personalized performance review for each of their direct reports. For employees, reviews are when managers log a formal record of their performance. In many companies the results of performance reviews are used to make decisions about promotions and pay raises , so focusing on them — or fretting about them — is common.

But by the time performance reviews come around, the opportunity for an employee to influence a manager’s opinion has all but passed, because managers are reviewing previous performance. At this point, as an employee, it can feel like all you’re able to do is worry about how the review meeting with your boss will go. But you actually have more agency here than you think. Rather than just anxiously anticipate your performance review, you can be proactive and channel your energy into crafting a comprehensive self-appraisal that highlights your strengths and accomplishments.

“I view the employee self-evaluation portion of a performance review as a can’t-miss opportunity to remind your manager of your accomplishments over the past year,” said Janelle Owens, Director of HR for online education company Test Prep Insight .

While employees may see the self-evaluation portion of a performance review as a required activity that offers little value, it’s actually a time to demonstrate what an asset you are to the company.

Self-evaluations vary from organization to organization; some are templated scorecards with a written self-reflection portion, while others offer a more open,  fill-in-the-blank format. Regardless of how formal or informal your company’s self-evaluation process is, these tips will be useful in highlighting your successes and addressing your areas for improvement in the most positive light possible by reframing them as opportunities for growth. 

Benefits of Self-Evaluations

In addition to being an opportunity to highlight your accomplishments to your manager, self-evaluations are also a powerful tool for employees for the following reasons:

4 Tips for Writing an Effective Self-Evaluation

Writing about ourselves can be uncomfortable — it can feel boastful at times, or awkward at the very least. Here’s what you need to know about writing a comprehensive, accurate, and effective self-review that demonstrates your strong performance while also touching on areas for growth. 

1. Be specific and provide examples.

Specificity helps contextualize claims. Telling your manager that you believe you’ve been able to meet your customer acquisition OKRs because you are a “people person” doesn’t give you the credit you deserve for your achievement. Vagueness, like in this example, robs you of the opportunity to tout your hard work and strategic approach.

It’s not only natural ability that’s responsible for your success, though that may be a part of it. But it’s also the work you put in, whether that be your diligence in following-up with qualified leads, or the ingenuity you’ve demonstrated by reaching out to them at non-peak email hours, say on a Tuesday afternoon. Perhaps it’s the fact that you take notes after speaking with prospective clients, which helps you remember key professional and personal details to draw on as you build a connection and relationship with them. 

Most likely, it’s a combination of several factors that has contributed to your success. Own that! If you’re struggling to get specific, try brainstorming a list of behaviors, skills, expertise, and/or abilities that you possess. Then, select the ones you want to highlight in your review, and elaborate on them with specific examples that illustrate each quality. 

2. Back up your contributions with metrics.

Numbers are powerful because they make a clear connection between performance and results. “Quantifiable figures help our brains put things in perspective, so to the extent you can wrap your accomplishments into metrics, do so,” urged Owens.

‍ Metrics are useful for providing evidence to support claims and highlight your successes, but they can also serve as leverage. “It’s crucial to have these measurements so you can negotiate for asks, like a higher salary [or] more flexible work schedule,” noted Mason McSpadden , Vice President of WELD Recruiting , a direct-hire recruiting firm.

Most employees have to set goals as part of the onboarding process , which gives the employee a clear rubric by which to evaluate their own performance. But even “if employees aren’t required to set goals with their boss or their team upon onboarding , they should take the time to do so themselves [anway],” McSpadden advised. That way, despite the fact that the organization may not have goals on file that they can compare employee performance to, you will. And you’ll be able to refer to your measurable progress and achievements when writing your self-review.

3. Frame weaknesses as opportunities.

While self-evaluations are an opportunity to highlight your stellar accomplishments, they’re also a time to self-reflect and assess where you can improve. Be honest about your shortcomings, but be sure to frame these areas for improvement as opportunities for growth. Mortgage broker Alan Harder said he advises employees to use positive or solution-oriented language when assessing areas in which they need to improve. For example, “instead of admitting, ‘This is where I really falter,’” said Harde, “say something like, ‘Here’s an area I’d like to focus on,’ ‘This is what I’ve discovered thus far,’ or, ‘This is how we should proceed in the future.’” 

4. Keep track of your accomplishments throughout the year.

Avoid recency bias , the tendency to focus on the most timely or recent events — or forgetting certain achievements altogether — by keeping track of your accomplishments and the impact they’ve had throughout the year. Trying to remember the details of a deal you closed in January can be difficult when you’re preparing for your review at the end of the year. You’ll have a much easier time writing a comprehensive but concise review if you can quickly refresh your memory on all your successes in one, easy-to-reference document. Keep a running Word doc (or a log in a notes app on your phone) with the important details about your achievements. Or, if you prefer pen and paper, designate a notebook specifically for this purpose and keep it handy at work. 

Helpful Examples to Use for Your Own Self-Assessment

Self-evaluation prompts vary from company to company, and sometimes even from department to department, but the following categories are common areas you’ll be asked to assess in a performance review . Use the below sample language to inspire the phrasing and verbiage of your own self-evaluation — but be sure to personalize these examples by tailoring them to your own successes, and add metrics and specific examples where possible.

For instance, the first example in the Teamwork and Collaboration section reads as follows:

“I excel at making team members feel comfortable and included by sharing openly, honestly, and vulnerably my [personal needs/perceived weaknesses/past mistakes, etc.]. In doing so, I help foster psychological safety and a sense of belonging on the team.”

To personalize it, you’d expand upon that example by adding more details to support this point, so your self-evaluation might read something like:

“I excel at making team members feel comfortable and included by sharing openly, honestly, and vulnerably my personal needs and asking for help. In doing so, I help foster psychological safety and a sense of belonging on the team. For example, early in the pandemic , I asked one of my direct reports to stand in for me in last quarter’s meeting with the auditors. I had become the primary caregiver for my mother, who is sick with Alzheimer’s, and I didn’t have the emotional bandwidth for the high-stakes and high-pressure meeting. The same employee later confided in me that as a result, they now felt more comfortable asking for tactical and emotional support from colleagues and me, their manager, since I’d been so upfront about asking for help myself.“

For each of the categories below, we’ve listed two examples highlighting strengths, followed by one example demonstrating a need for improvement in the same category — including a way to reframe the shortcoming in a more positive light. 

1. Communication and Cooperation


Area for Improvement

2. Achievements

3. Teamwork and Collaboration

4. Creativity and Innovation

‍ Area for Improvement

5. Problem-Solving and Critical Thinking

6. Flexibility and Adaptability 

The thought of writing a self-evaluation doesn’t have to strike fear and dread in your heart anymore. Instead, reframe the self-evaluation as a chance to refresh your manager about what an asset you are. Use facts and figures to support and illustrate your successes and employ solution-oriented language when discussing the areas in which you’d like to grow.

Taking the time and effort to put together a thorough self-assessment will be well worth it; by crafting a clear, concrete, and accurate portrayal of your performance, you’ll be able to help your manager remember your successes — and advocate for yourself and your career in the process. Check out Lattice’s self-evaluation template to get started!

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50 Self-evaluation Phrases for Your Next Performance Review

Lori Li

Performance reviews can be nerve-racking—especially when it comes to self-evaluation.  Am I being too critical? What if I seem arrogant? It’s often difficult to know what to write or how well it will be received.

In this article, you’ll discover why your self-evaluation is important, learn how to get started writing yours, and find 50 performance phrases you can use on your self-evaluation.

What’s the goal of self-evaluation for a performance review?

How to get started writing your self-evaluation.

What’s the benefit of a strong self-evaluation?

One of the most crucial parts of a performance review is the self-evaluation portion because it reflects your self-awareness. When you are self-aware, you are conscious of your strengths and weaknesses—and how others perceive you. A higher level of awareness means you are more likely to have a higher confidence level, build stronger relationships, and make better decisions.

Being self-aware not only benefits you on an individual level, it also helps your company. In fact, it can have a direct impact on your company’s bottom line. The Kerry Fong Institute found that employees at poor-performing organizations had 20% more blind spots than employees at financially strong companies.

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The goal of self-evaluation or self-assessment is to provide honest insights into how you perceive your performance and reflect on how others perceive your performance. 

Organizational psychologist Tasha Eurich refers to these two perspectives as internal and external self-awareness. In a Harvard Business Review article, she described this relationship as a “delicate balance of two distinct, even competing, viewpoints.” This balance ensures your self-evaluation won’t be one-sided.

To better understand others’ viewpoints, it’s important to seek regular performance feedback. Remember, feedback is a process—not just a single event. It can help you identify blind spots you may have developed and even uncover strengths you didn’t know you had. This will allow you make continuous performance improvements and enhance your career. 

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1. Reflect on feedback

To create a great self-evaluation, it’s important to understand how your actions affect others.  

Between your performance reviews, be observant and mindful when you're collaborating with different teams. If any feedback comes up in your daily work, take note and reflect on this information when you’re preparing to complete your self-evaluation. 

You can also take a proactive approach and solicit 360-degree feedback from your peers, managers, and direct reports.


2. Make a list of your top accomplishments and identify areas for improvements

Your self-evaluation is an opportunity to highlight how you used your unique strengths to accomplish your goals while also being honest about areas you could improve. 

Before writing your self-evaluation, take the time to compare your job description to your recent performance. Where did you excel? Where did you fall short? What personal strengths or weaknesses contributed to this? 

Once you have both lists created, compare them to your organization or department’s goals, values, and missions and identify how they align.

3. Gather analytics to show impact

Using quantifiable data in your self-evaluation will show the real value you provide. It also helps legitimize your results. 

For the best results, make sure to include numbers and action words. For example, instead of saying “I am one of our top sales associates,” you could say, “My sales have increased by x% since my last review.”

In addition to using analytics to showcase your accomplishments, you can also use them to create SMART goals for your next review period. These goals should be s pecific, m easurable, a chievable, r elevant, and t imely. Here’s an example to get you thinking in the right direction: Over the next x months, I will increase sales by y% by making z cold calls per week.

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How to address weaknesses in your self-evaluation

It can be difficult to talk about areas you need to improve on or situations you’ve handled poorly. But doing so shows that you take ownership of your mistakes and have a growth mindset . According to Gina Abudi of the Abudi Consulting Group :

Addressing your weaker areas provides balance for your self-evaluation. It also gives you the opportunity to seek guidance from your supervisor when making improvements.

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Once you’ve identified a specific area to improve, follow these three steps to address it on your self-evaluation.

1. Make a commitment to improve

Start by acknowledging your shortcomings and explain that you want to address them. 

2. Set a SMART goal for yourself

In the previous section, you read about SMART goals. Use this information to create one for improving the areas you’ve identified. Remember, these goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely.

3. Create a plan of action 

After you’ve committed to improving and set a SMART goal, you’ll want to cover how you plan to make it all happen. There are a lot of resources out there that can help you figure this out. Take the time to research which ones will get you the most return on investment.

Here are seven free or low-cost resources to get you started:

If you have trouble finding something that will work for you, don’t be afraid to ask your supervisor for recommendations. Your performance review is your opportunity to engage in a dialogue and work together to find solutions.


50 sample phrases to use in your next performance review

When you write your self-evaluation, there are three main areas you want to focus on. These include:

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Once you can answer these questions, you’ll be ready to write your self-evaluation. 

With that in mind, let’s take a look at 50 self-evaluation phrases to consider using on your next performance review.


1. I clearly communicate my expectations to my team.

2. I effectively communicate at all levels in our organization by [insert specific examples here].

3. I tactfully provide difficult feedback and approach sensitive situations.

4. I effectively present my ideas to groups of all sizes.

5. I frequently share relevant information with my peers so that our team as a whole can benefit.

6. I proactively communicate changes that are coming with the stakeholders they will affect.

7. I frequently publicly and privately acknowledge my peers and/or employees for a job well done.

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Job Performance

8. I take pride in my work and value doing my job well.

9. I frequently volunteer to participate in projects that are beyond my job responsibilities.

10. I promote a team-oriented work environment by [insert specific examples here].

11. I have exceeded my [insert specific goal here] performance goal by [insert specific number here]%.

12. I have decreased [e.g., costs and customer churn] by [insert specific number here]%.

13. I frequently challenge myself to perform better.


15. I follow through on my commitments to others and keep them aware of any challenges I face.

16. I have met [insert specific number here]% of my major deadlines.

17. I use my time effectively and am able to prioritize my work.

18. I am mindful of my team and customers’ needs and schedule my planned time off well in advance.

19. I regularly show up on time and fully prepared to start my day.

20. I am not afraid to ask for guidance when necessary.

21. I promptly respond to emails I receive from customers and peers.

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Customer Orientation

22. I effectively handle difficult or hostile customers by [insert specific tactics here].

23. I actively listen to understand the customer’s point of view.’

24. I go beyond what is required to ensure our customers are educated on [insert specific topics here].

25. I have received [insert specific number here]% on my customer satisfaction survey.

26. I am continually working to improve the customer experience by [insert specific examples here].

27. I am mindful of my own interactions as a customer so I can better understand our customers’ perspective.

Innovation and Creativity

28. I regularly look to streamline and improve our work processes.

29. My idea to [insert specific idea here] has increased [insert specific metric here] by [insert specific number here]%.

30. I approach each challenge with fresh eyes and look for out-of-the-box solutions.

31. I frequently collaborate with others to brainstorm and problem-solve.

32. When I was facing [insert specific challenge here], I [insert specific solution here].

33. I regularly consider others’ perspectives and try to find solutions that work for everyone.

34. I am able to quickly adapt to new situations and change course, if necessary.


Growth and Development

35. I am committed to my personal growth and regularly set personal goals for myself.

36. I stay current on developments in my field and regularly read [insert specific sources here].

37. I am committed to my professional growth and have taken [insert specific training here] training to improve my [insert specific skills here] skills.

38. I regularly seek opportunities to connect and learn from others in my field.

39. I have a long-term vision for my career and continually take steps toward achieving it.

40. I learn quickly and am able to adapt to change.

41. I value learning and regularly seek opportunities to learn something new.

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Performance improvement plan

42. Although I try to be transparent, I have recently become aware that my team doesn’t think I am.

43. While I excel at serving our customers, I need to work on following up with them more frequently.

44. I typically have a very positive mindset and struggle with holding difficult conversations that need to take place.

45. Although I communicate clearly with small groups, I usually don’t get my ideas across when I’m presenting information to a larger group.

46. I have a tendency to stick with what’s working and am not always open to new approaches.

47. I have a lot of ideas about how to improve our work but I am afraid to share them.

48. While I am mindful of my teams’ needs, I often forget to put my OOO time on the calendar in a timely manner.

49. Even though I value my peers, I can sometimes come across as unapproachable.

50. I like to figure things out myself and sometimes I don’t ask for help when I should.

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Self-evaluation templates

Need a little more help? Here’s a template you can use:

Get started with your self-evaluation

Writing a self-evaluation can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. 

A self-evaluation is about more than simply how you view your performance. It’s also about being able to see things from another point of view. Before you start writing your review, take the time to reflect on how others perceive your actions.

An easy way to collect this type of performance feedback is with TINYpulse’s 360 feedback tool , which lets you request feedback from anyone at any time, anonymously or non-anonymously. This type of 360-degree feedback will help you to write a stronger self-evaluation, make improvements, and strengthen your work relationships.

With TINYpulse, your organization can get a bird’s-eye view of performance across all metrics and from every perspective. With that information on hand, all of your employees can focus on continuously improving. Over time, this continuous improvement translates into a happier and more productive team, happier customers, and a stronger bottom line.

To learn more about how TINYpulse can help your organization get to the next level, book a demo today .

Book a Demo


100 Useful Performance Review Phrases

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  1. How to Write a Self Evaluation (With Examples)

    6 Tips for Writing a Self Evaluation Keep track of your hits and misses throughout the review period. Take your time writing the evaluation. Have a mentor, trusted colleague or friend read over your draft. Acknowledge mistakes and how you learned from them. Be clear about your career goals.

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  3. Self-Performance Review: How-To With Examples and Tips

    To write a self-performance review, first determine where you are in your professional career. A great way to approach this is to list out the positive attributes, unique qualities and professional skills you possess. Making a list of positive qualities alongside how you exhibit these in the workplace.