I’m going through my first performance sync that includes a self evaluation / reflection at the moment. We were given some tips for writing a good self reflection that I’m happy to share and which helped me understand more about why I need to do it and how to go about it.
Tips for Writing a Good Self Reflection (Paraphrased)
Set aside time to do it and do it your way. Each person approaches it differently, so work out the best way for you. Is it to read through the questions, then go away and think about them before providing an answer? Or do you work best just getting it started and getting on a roll. At the end of the day, the reflection is for you and your mentor / lead, so approach it in a way you get the most from it.
Think over the last quarter, not just the last few weeks. I think this point is really important. What challenges did you overcome and what did you achieve in the last three months (or your period of time). Recency bias is something that you need to be mindful of when writing your self reflection.
Who is the audience for what you are writing down and why you are doing it? For me it’s my mentor and it’s to aid a conversation between the two of us. It doesn’t have to be formal, use the opportunity to start a dialogue. In my opinion, there shouldn’t be any surprises with what you are writing, I see this step as documenting what happened in the quarter and things that should already have been discussed.
Celebrate your achievements. It’s really easy to tell the story of what you may not have done, but remember to take the time and reflect on what you did do. Tell your story and be proud of what you have achieved.
The most valuable take away for me, there is no one right way to do this. We are all different in the way we reflect on what we have done, so leverage your individuality and approach it in the way that’s best for you.
Hope these points help, I’m not an expert in this area, but found they’ve helped me get started.