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Say It To My Face – What To Do When Your Boss Gives You Great Feedback In Person & A Bad Review On Paper

My manager likes to discuss our performance reviews before he fills out the official evaluation form.  During our conversation, his feedback was all very positive, with no negative comments.  However, on my written review, I was shocked to find a below average rating for communication skills.  Why would he praise me to my face, then criticize me on the form?

Marie’s Answer

Your boss clearly took the coward’s way out, delivering the good news in person and the bad news in writing.  On top of that, he saved up his critical comments for the review instead of addressing issues when they occurred.  Performance feedback should always be given in real time.

But despite his mishandling of the process, there are apparently some issues which you need to address.  So put aside your understandable irritation and ask how you might improve your communication skills.  To circumvent this appraisal maneuver in the future, periodically request some constructive feedback from your gutless manager.