ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Out with the Old Year, In with the New Year

Updated on December 23, 2017
Carolyn M Fields profile image

Lifelong learner, musician, author, world traveler, truth enthusiast, and all around bon vivant.

Sunrise on New Year's Day
Sunrise on New Year's Day | Source

When the year is winding down, and about to go into the history books, it’s time for a bit of reflection and renewal. At the end of the year, many people are taking a “breakation” from their usual routines, and find it a good time to take stock of where they are in life, and where they are headed in the coming year.

Back in my corporate days, year-end was all about cleaning out your project files, starting a new calendar, and writing the dreaded annual performance appraisal. In my former company, each salaried employee was required to compile a list of “accomplishments” for the year, which the supervisor would take and expand upon. Ultimately, the supervisor would “rate” each achievement (which was always tied to a goal set the previous January), and then assign an “overall” rating for the year.

This was an extremely important process, since your salary increase (if any) and annual incentive payment would be tied to these results. Non-management or hourly employees went through a similar process, but without the emphasis on incentive compensation.

What Were Your Expectations?

Unless outcomes are tied to expectations, an appraisal rating is virtually meaningless. In other words, if you don’t know what you are trying to achieve, anything you do will be enough. Alternatively, anything you do will never be enough. It only gets meaningful if you’ve set some goals and objectives for the year, and then look back to see how well you did (or did not) meet those expectations.

In fact, the appraisal rating system we used was all about how we did relative to those “expectations.” Since I have retired from the company, I have lost touch with how they do things today. But I am relatively certain, however, that there still is some sort of evaluation process in place, and that the year-end or start of a new year is the time it takes place.

The Scale

So, what exactly was the scale that they used? Glad that you asked. There were many versions over the years, but this is the last one I remember using. Disclaimer: It is written in my own words, as opposed to “Human Resources Speak,” so enjoy.

  • Consistently Far Exceeded Expectations – which means you were a rock star. You crossed all of your T’s and dotted all of your I’s, finished everything on time or early, and stayed within budget. Not only that, everybody loved you in the process. This would be the “walks on water” rating. It also means that you “successfully responded to extraordinary circumstances and made exceptional contributions well beyond the standard responsibilities of the position.” That having been said, one does not always have the opportunity to “far exceed” expectations, if there are no challenging opportunities available.
  • Consistently Exceeded Expectations – this is still a stellar rating, given only to superior performers. You didn’t walk on the water, but you at least floated all of the time. You didn’t make any egregious errors, and you didn’t tick anybody off. It means that you “responded to typical circumstances in an exceptional manner.” You should note that theoretically anyone could achieve this level of performance, depending on their behavior.
  • Consistently Met Expectations – which some might suggest means “average,” since it’s in the middle of the scale. Nothing could be further from the truth. You still had to work diligently and consistently (hence the name) in order to earn this appraisal rating. I always advocated a six-point scale, since it would eliminate the “middle.” I never gained very much support, but I still think it’s a fine idea. There was a lot of “organizational development” work done, in order to get employees comfortable with the notion that this rating meant more than “showed up and did the work.” I don’t know if they ever succeeded.
  • Usually Met Expectations – is a dangerous rating to receive. It means that your performance was “sketchy.” Sometimes you made it, sometime you didn’t. You were, in a word, unreliable. If you get too many of these ratings, you need to start sucking up immediately. Oh, and update your resume. But you can turn things around if you show “the willingness and ability to improve.”
  • Consistently Below Expectations – which is synonymous with “failed.” Not much more needs to be said about this rating, other than the fact the employees in this category were put on a “performance improvement plan” and given a very, very short leash. If immediate and sustained improvement was not seen, then your job was in jeopardy. This rarely happened, but it could. And the threat of it kept most employees walking the straight and narrow.

So, How Did You Do?

Since I am retired, I no longer participate in a formal appraisal process, but I still (out of force of habit), look over my year to compare my personal “expectations” for myself with my actual “performance.” And this year was no different.

I am delighted to say that this past year I did “far exceed” my personal expectations in several areas of my life. Publishing would be one of those. I published more hubs than I had planned, plus I authored and published an EBook for the first time in my life. I even published, and was PAID for a poem (haiku) that I wrote.

On the flipside of the coin, I am chagrinned to say that I also “did not meet” expectations in some other areas. In my retired state, this outcome is more “feedback” than anything else, since I can’t really get fired from retirement. What it tells me is that I need to re-evaluate my priorities, and adjust my life to do the things I love, and not undertake those projects and processes that do not motivate me to do my very best.

But enough about me. How did you do? I think it’s an important question to ask yourself before you create your New Year’s Resolutions or goals for next year. But whatever you undertake, I wish you all love, joy, health, happiness, peace, and prosperity in the coming year.

Do you make New Year's Resolutions?

See results

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • Larry Rankin profile image

    Larry Rankin 

    2 years ago from Oklahoma

    I don't always make new year resolutions, but when I do, I tend to keep them.

    Great read!

  • kalinin1158 profile image

    Lana Adler 

    2 years ago from California

    Congrats on being published and happy new year! May it be even better than the last one. I don't usually make New Years resolutions but I like to have some kind of plan, or an idea, of what I want to accomplish in the coming year.

  • tsadjatko profile image

    2 years ago from https:// www.consumeraffairs.com/ online/ hubpages. html

    OMG it's the end of the year already?

    Boy that went fast. Actually it was no different than any other year I can remember, since I retired. I get up every morning, run ten times around the block, like I always do to keep in shape, then I push the block back under my bed and go to sleep until noon.

    I have noticed my memory gets worse every year but on the bright side my forgetory is better than ever.

    So I guess if I had to re-evaluate my priorities I'd exercise less and sleep more, if that is possible to do and still keep in the shape I am in, which my doctor says is amazing for my age, or did he say it's amazing I'm not dead at my age? I can't remember, oh well chalk another one up to my forgetory.

    https://youtu.be/VZRkWfW0sTk

    Great advice Carolyn, just too late for me to find it useful!

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)