The weirdest time of my school was whenever I had a test or exam. There was something eerie about that time....especially if it’s the final exams. The final exams used to be in the summers so there was something that was different then like the sound of the rustic fan while you're studying, the smell of papers from your notebooks, the pencil box you'd so neatly arrange and keep. There’s an unsaid pressure you feel that’s there and all you want is the exam to be over....the result didn't matter. Well those were school days. I used to think in school, once I'm done with my studies I'm never going to miss these awful days. I’ll work and get paid and enjoy and will be free from writing these boring exams...Boy was I wrong or what? I did finish school and college and did get rid of exams only to learn that there are exams in the office too. It’s called My Annual Appraisal. There’s a similar eerie atmosphere that is created at this time of the year in the office also. This is when you'd fill up your assessments for your appraisal; followed would be your review with your boss and then the final verdict would be out. So if the mail specifies you have one week to fill it up and send it across, you’ll delay filling it to tomorrow. You’ll open the form, read all the questions, scratch your head and then say “O well I’ll do it later (because you realize that you suddenly don’t have anything to write)..It’s not like the deadline is today.” It really amazes me that it’s during this period we come to think of what we did year long, day in and day out, sitting for around 9 hours doing our daily specified jobs and even more; yet we run out of words when it comes to fill our assessment sheets. It’s amazing....See for your self...Answer these questions and you'll know. 1. Describe you current role: A: Hmm I don’t know...I am the Operations Manager and my role is to manage the day to day activities such as data analysis, well I guess generating reports is one of them , analysis and o yes; team management.(what you want to say here is I don’t know what I do because I'm number crunching the whole time when my boss asks me about the current status, the variations of the past month, the real time data, my teams problems are to be handled and I have make sure everyone is on time and manage everyone’s data and keep them motivated by coming up with attractive schemes. I have to even listen to my boss’ non stop chatter and nod a yes to everything he says because that’s what he likes.) 2. Your Notable achievements: A: I've designed a report that helps to track information better( because there wasn’t one earlier), have improved performance by 15% compared to last quarter, curtailed floor attrition by 5% and so on (what you think here is that I've given my boss timely data for his presentation when he was representing our team, I created all the reports and sent it on his behalf, I maintained my team by listening to their jabber and promising them  a better a future, I worked overtime to get projects completed within deadline and even had to run errands for my boss at times when he demanded like dropping his cheque in the bank nearby when I had to visit a client...not to mention I’ve achieved to develop a high BP because of the stress…..hmmm well I cant write that ) 3. Things you want to change: A.(this is an all time patience tester question)I would like the system to be more transparent and would like more training on so on and so forth ( what you want to say is that please stop the non sense and work sensibly....speak directly instead of beating round the bushes, stop the late night meetings because I have to be back home and please train us before you implement a new software or new system so that we can work better and for God's sake implement at least one suggestion given by any employee) You'll see that when it comes to filling up these forms you'd end up lacking words so you come up with neutral ones like my strength is motivation and leadership (obviously, you’re the manager), my aim is to make sure we progress (hello...that’s why the company hired you), My key performance area is analysis (yeah....right...isn’t that something we all have to do). We'd rather be neutral than pen down the obvious because we know that after this eerie day of filling the form is over, our bosses await us at the table and we'd be waiting for the comments. And when that day finally arrives, we again have to put up charade of not knowing what he’ll say when we know exactly what he has in mind....we'll hear the usual..."O, we've been know how nice your work is and there are a few things that you've done that have helped in progressing but you know you can do better and we expected more and then there’s the bell curve ...blah blah blah...." What he wants to say is that "You know, you didn’t give me the report on Saturday when you knew I had a presentation on Monday, you did not attend the party we had on Sunday night and you were not available when I needed you to go to the bank because you weren’t well. But you did give me my daily reports on time and yes you also nodded to 5 of my 7 remarks and you also smiled at few of the jokes I cracked so I guess you get an average time when you'll be there at my beck and call and would laugh uncontrollably on all jokes, nod at all 7 remarks and would take care of all my other errands I might think of awarding you an excellent rating." We always run out of words to describe ourselves to earn the ratings while our bosses run out of words to rate us down...It’s funny that the most crucial period of our year is mocked by superiors so easily that it kills the very spirit and purpose of what appraisal means. There’s another thing that brings change in the atmosphere now. Your boss doesn’t smile at you when he walks by, your tea time gossips would now include “what did you write...what did you answer for this question, should I talk to boss about this issue, did Boss talk to you about your ratings?”, the team members work extra cautiously and everyone's ears go ultrasonic when boss discusses anything with anyone within his team. Suddenly everyone is on time at the office and people don’t even get sick too often and if they do, they make sure they are in the office to display the dedication. In my experience I've seen hard work pay off but in due time. Now what’s the definition of due time is also something mystical, I am yet to figure that out...until that gets solved I'll be missing my school days because at work results to our appraisal do matter.      

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