- Open your monthly/weekly/whatever status reports and merge them into a single document. Close the monthly docs. this gives you a compression opportunity, often you will find some redundancies or things that don't matter as much as you thought they did. use a smaller font, clean things up so they are easy for you to read/work through.
- Read through/think about this collection of activity, what are the 2,3,or 4 buckets they can fit in to tell your end of year narrative of your key accomplishments. what really are probably better suited to go into the section on strengths?
- Take a break and go do something else for awhile.
- Think about your proposed buckets after you've had a break...do you like them? how do they align with your group and corporate charter? If you like them start to build out your focal sheet based on these buckets, cutting/pasting from your list created in  into the main Focal worksheet(s). Spend some time thinking about these buckets, the titles will provide the anchor for the most important part of the document.
- Now you have a list that is too big and not coherent, but all of your work is in the appropriate buckets and you've made some hard decisions about where things go.
- Compress each bucket to fit into your corporate format. it is usually some form of ~3 accomplishments, 3 strengths, 3 areas of development
Monday, January 11, 2016
One technique to efficiently craft your annual review
Caveat: A broader career direction discussion should talk about a 5 year Development Plan.
The focus here is on the yearly focal/review and how to get it done efficiently.
The Focal algorithm:
I am writing this down because each year i seem to reinvent the same process forgetting what i did the year before until about 30-40% through the process then i remember 'Wait, I did it this way last year?'. :)
This is just the practical part of getting your review complete. One should also use this time to take a 'big think' about your 5 year plan and how the work you've done in those years aligns with what is in that list. What needs changed? What would you do different? What rathole did you go down that you want out of? Take some time to really think about where your career is going and how to course correct where needed as topics with your manager. Use the section of 'Areas of Improvement' as a way to drive that into your development for the next year and your development plan.