Quantcast

What To Do When You Get A Bad Performance Review

Workin' Girl

I felt the heat rising to my cheeks, a slight tingling continuing up to my temples and inching up the back of my ears. I took another sip of water, trying desperately to keep my composure.


Inhale. Count to 10. Exhale.

I pressed my fingertips against my temples and then reached for my glass once more, hoping to feign my horror as dehydration, when in reality, I was trying to keep the tears from flowing.

Keeping it 100% real: receiving negative feedback hurts.

We have all read the quotes touting the importance of bouncing back, how constructive criticism makes us better and stronger, and the role of adversity in identifying areas for improvement… the list is endless. However, these supposed benefits aren't always realized when first delivered.

Upon receipt of a negative review, feelings of inadequacy, frustration, confusion, denial, and even hopelessness can rise to the surface. And it's okay to acknowledge their existence in your quest for a comeback rather than force them down.

Especially for my fellow overachievers, receiving negative feedback when you are already your biggest critic isn't always easy. But, just know that you are not alone. Here are 5 tips to help you get back on track.

What To Do After A Bad Performance Review

1.The 3 R’s: Reflect, React, Rebound

Getty Images

We all learned how to stop, drop, and roll in response to a sudden fire as children. Now, the 3 R's are our response to professional fire drills. Upon receiving constructive feedback, take a moment to digest the information prior to responding or defending yourself (reflect). Be it 24 hours later, or during a scheduled follow-up meeting, streamline stated feedback into action items that you can address, seek clarification upon, and implement (react). Later, apply stated feedback and/or provide proof of adherence to begin the process of working towards more solid, positive future feedback (rebound).

2.Note Areas for Improvement

An extension of the first "R", reflect, be sure to specifically note which items you need to improve upon and ensure that you fully understand what changes are being asked of you. If your manager requests that you come in earlier, your next question should be: "What time?" Don't make assumptions. Ask for explicit examples of improved performance so you will know how to succeed and what benchmarks you're being judged against.

3.Implement Feedback

Getty Images

After you know what is expected of you, do it! Even if it takes a while to get in the swing of things, remember that repetition and "practice makes permanent". Expectation setting and reshaping your own habits can be especially difficult when you work with managers who are particularly set in their ways.

Note: While you are trying to work your way towards more favorable reviews, this is often not the best time to try to force new ideas or changes to your team or boss, even if your suggestions are "right" or "more efficient". Know your manager and know your timing. Your opportunity to make a meaningful impact will come and will likely be more greatly appreciated when they trust the consistency and quality of your work.

4.Document Your Adherence

Keep your receipts, sis. Not only does documentation show good organization and listening skills, but in the event any questions regarding your improvement arise, it's always good to have clearly outlined examples of your behavior handy. In some situations, your documentation can be your lifeline. Don't let others put words in your mouth.

5.Proactively Seek Feedback

Getty Images

You don't have to wait to be surprised during your performance review and feedback sessions. If anything, you should aim to not have any surprises during your review cycles. Be proactive and try asking your interviewers out to coffee or making a point to check in with your manager once or twice a week to assess how they feel about your performance. Sometimes small annoyances like your project turnover rate or time spent on your cell phone can manifest into job-altering assumptions from the viewpoint of your manager. Don't wait until it's too late. Check in early.

Related Stories

6 Ways To Overcome Anxiety In The Workplace – Read More

Getting the Job Will Be Easier If You Learn These 5 Things – Read More

21 Great Questions To Ask During A Job Interview – Read More

Featured image by Getty Images.

Y'all know we love a multi-hyphenate. Adrienne Bailon is that and then some. Over the years, our favorite Cheetah Girl has remained relevant with evolving identities from singer to actress to entrepreneur. Despite her first dream job of being an obstetrician, Adrienne's emergence as a superstar back in 1999 has proven that she is unafraid to experiment. Most importantly, The Real co-host's mission is centered around authenticity and transparency.

Keep reading... Show less
The daily empowerment fix you need.
Make things inbox official.

Like most people, I have a love/hate relationship with Sundays. On the positive side, I love Sundays because it's normally my day to unapologetically indulge in an endless amount of mimosas and delicious bites while catching up with my girls at the latest day party. But after the mimosas are gone, the food has been digested, and the music stops, I'm back at home, looking at my upcoming reality - Monday.

Keep reading... Show less

How We Met is a series where xoNecole talks about love and relationships with real-life couples. We learn how they met, how like turned into love, and how they make their love work.

When it comes to sexuality, there have always been societal limitations centered on what is "acceptable." However, with more honest conversations about how fluid sexuality and sexual expression can be, now there are so many more opportunities for self-exploration and taking back ownership of our identities again. One couple that is living their truth and being sexual beings unapologetically while living and loving their lives are Jasmine Johnson and King Noire.

Keep reading... Show less

Zendaya has always championed diversity in Hollywood and proves that she doesn't just talk the talk, but she also walks the walk. In the past, she has called out racism, colorism and even addressed her own privilege as a biracial woman in the industry. For example, in 2018, the former Disney star attended BeautyCon and talked about how she wants to use her privilege to help other Black women.

Keep reading... Show less

Recently, I was talking to a friend of mine about someone who once told me that they had an annual week-long summer rendezvous that lasted for over 15 years with someone else. Yep — this individual would meet up with another person who lived in a different state, solely to have sex for a week straight, and then return to their city as if nothing ever happened. According to them, the only reason why this ritual romp eventually came to an end is because the other person decided to get serious about someone else; however, it wasn't until it ended that the person who told me the story realized how attached they actually had become to their sex partner (a cautionary tale). After I completed my lil' tale, my friend simply said, "Oh, I do that s — t every cuffing season. There are some people who I only talk to around this time of year, we f — k around and then that's that until the season comes around again."

Keep reading... Show less
Exclusive Interviews

Jill Scott Talks Balance, 'Highway To Heaven' & Not Burning Herself Out To Produce

In this exclusive, the actress dishes on executive producing the reboot, and balancing business and motherhood.

Latest Posts