Bad Appraisal = Good Opportunity

May 10, 2017 Business , Opinion , OPINION/NEWS


Siddhartha Rastogi

You just came out of your yearly appraisal furious, red faced, spelling out names to your line manager and dotted line manager. You believed that you worked so hard, burnt your midnight oil for this, honestly for this! Almost negligible bonus, no hike, no promotion, etc, etc.

Your peer who licks the boss’s back and helps him with his daughter’s wedding and arranges tickets for shows got the promotion and raise. Is this fair?

Or let’s be less melodramatic, my department, my vertical, my country’s other businesses didn’t do well hence no hike and no bonus for me. Or it could be that your superiors never helped you in getting any accounts whilst they helped your peers and colleagues and that’s why you didn’t do well and got poor ratings. But honestly, you did try hard, and put in those extra hours of work.


Shouldn’t that be considered?


Multiple reasons; Single outcome – No perceived professional growth and No perceived financial progress.


Let’s first understand clearly, what’s happening with you or with millions and zillions of white collared workers. It is not a case of clear Input & output.


If you were thinking and believing that:

Hard Work through the Year = Good Appraisal = Good financial incentives + Promotions



Your professional growth and financial success is in no way related to your appraisal and your appraisal is in no way related to the yearly work and efforts put in by you. Moreover the reason for you putting in hard work in your job and spending those extra hours is NOT because at the beginning of the year you are thinking you will get promoted by the end of the year.


These are 3 different pieces of your professional life and are independent of each other or at most have very little influence on each other.


Let me explain this bit by bit.


  1. Your input or hard work – People work hard since they enjoy their work and gain knowledge from the challenges they face every day. These problems and the desire to solve them brings you to the office every day.

Let’s assume, if you come across a tough client, you will try and make sure you get that client’s business and increase the wallet share with him as the learning from this episode will be far higher as compared to others.

Why you are working so hard to get that client on boarded, get that transaction done. You know learning from this deal is far more enriching than financial or professional benefits which will accrue on account of that transaction. Even if this fails, you remain happy that to tackle the situation well.


  1. Your Appraisal – As stated earlier, you believed that you worked hard throughout the year and your appraisal is the outcome of the entire year’s performance.

Human beings don’t have a memory of more than 2 days, at best 2 weeks, almost impossible to have a memory of 2 months and simply unimaginable to have ome for an entire year. Your appraisal is based on the noise, fireworks, organizational presence and client feedback you show to your so called masters, sorry managers, during the last month of the year and during your appraisal month.

What they will judge you on, is how have you performed in the current month of your appraisal. Appraisals are done thinking for fitment of the forthcoming year taking cues from the last year.


  1. Your promotion and your bonus – These relate to your job growth and financial growth. In a world where more and more people wish to do less and less work, laying your hands on other territories is a matter of asking and reaching out to your managers as they will be happy to pass the baton to you at the same designation. In other words you become more valuable for the company thus less probability of you losing your job during a downturn. Your bonus can be reached by investing smartly from the income you are generating every month. Returns from investments can be far higher and more tax efficient than a bonus, so you can plan and allocate your time accordingly on your investments.



The key to remember here is:

Your poor appraisal is a great opportunity to reassess your interests and the way you work and learn and then present it to the world. Perhaps poor appraisal is a way to show the world that you will not quit and will turn around and push the appraiser’s back.

Good that you got poor appraisal this year as you will notice that in times to come.


Green shoots coming out of a dead trunk are,

more visible than green trees in the forests.”










Siddhartha Rastogi

Siddhartha Rastogi

Siddhartha was born to a learned middle class educated family in Semi Urban India. His father was an extremely honest man who because of his honesty had to pay the price in corporate world. Mother is a determined woman who ensured that children are being well taken care off. After a few years of birth, doctors called Siddhartha, a slow child having flat foot. He would fall more than he could walk. Determined mother ensured all therapies for her son to come out strong to fight the world. Siddhartha joined swimming when he was in 6th standard. Seeing other children of his class, he jumped in 10 feet deep pool and learnt swimming on his own, the very same day.

From that day there was no looking back. He topped his city in 12th and went to score highest in his B school exams. During his profession as banker, he became youngest branch manager of a MNC bank managing their biggest wealth branch in the country. There he found love of his life and got married. His love of his life emerged in the form of his daughter who completely changed him for good.

Siddhartha Rastogi is Director for a boutique Investment bank in India.

Siddhartha is a forward looking thinker & writer who has written a book on decision making. 8 Simple steps to effective decision making.

He writes on various social and current issues via his blog and can also be found on twitter.


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