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I'm not sure what's the right English term for it, but I know that people have some kind of a conversation, about their accomplishments and such after some time on a new job, with their boss. Things to improve, to reevaluate and such.

I now work as a software developer (junior), my first serious job ever. It's been 4 months since I've started. My personal relationships with my boss/supervisor are quite good, mostly only professional, we almost never talk about anything not related to job (there have been 2 times in the last month that we talked about personal things (not that personal, just not technical), a 1 minute talk each time). When I have a question I feel free to ask him, and he looks quite happy to help me, so I'm pretty sure we're on the same wavelength.

However I do have some doubts about my integration in the team/office. Not something specific, I just feel that I'm expendable and can be fired the moment somebody somewhere decides so. I don't worry about it 24/7, it's not that bad, but I do wish to have a greater connection to my boss at the least.

I sometimes get a feeling that the best situation my boss could wish for, is if I were sitting there for a whole day, fixing bugs, and never interfere with anything else. I guess it might be just my inner anxiety?

Anyway, I'm looking for advice about making my position in the company stronger. And first things first, I want to know what you guys have to tell about me asking my boss for a personal evaluation talk (or however it's called). My worries are as such:

  • Is it unprofessional to -explicitly- ask a supervisor what he thinks about me
  • Would I be seen as too uncertain (which isn't such a positive trait)
  • Will my boss think that I think poor of our relationships
  • Sounds too anxious, but what if my boss never thought about my evaluation and my question will make him finally figure out that I'm not that good

I do hope to get some constructive feedback and improve myself from that talk, but again, I feel that things could go wrong from just asking about it.

P.S. I'm in my 20s, my boss is in his 30s (both men). The stage is Israel. As far as I know, ethics and such here are close to Europe's, maybe less harsh.

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    The word you're after (I think) is "appraisal". Here in the UK, we have these meetings on a yearly/bi-yearly to discuss personal performance and goals for the upcoming period. – Snow Jan 9 '18 at 13:21
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It sounds like you're referring to what we'd call a "performance review" or "appraisal" in the UK.. here these are generally conducted periodically on a calendar schedule. Typically you'll have one at least annually but it's not uncommon for them to happen quarterly or bi-annually in some companies.

From what you've written in your question it doesn't really sound like you have anything to worry about in terms of your performance (good managers don't wait for a scheduled appraisal before delivering any negative feedback).

As regards your concerns about having a "greater connection" with your boss, again I don't think there's too much to worry about there - you've only known him 4 months and it can take time for a rapport like that to develop. And some people just aren't that in to having personal conversations with colleagues, work is after all the reason why you are both there!

If more time goes by and you haven't had an appraisal-type meeting with your boss it's perfectly reasonable to ask him if you can have a quick one-to-one chat about how you are getting on, and this shouldn't be perceived negatively - especially if you approach it from a point of view of asking them if they are happy with your performance and if there is anything more they want to be doing (or not doing I suppose.. but that's kind of implied).

  • Nice answer sir, your first paragraph is spot on. – Mister Positive Jan 9 '18 at 14:16
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    @IamSoNotListening much obliged :) – motosubatsu Jan 9 '18 at 14:21
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Is it unprofessional to -explicitly- ask a supervisor what he thinks about me

Why would it be? You could get him during say a coffee break and ask his opinions about you on the ground that "there's always room for improvement". This statement will make your question appear fitting and suitable both in cases he has a positive or negative opinion.

Would I be seen as too uncertain (which isn't such a positive trait)

I think you'd rather look like a proactive guy striving for improvement and not settling for mediocrity. And anyway, you've been there for 4 months, a certain amount of uncertainty is acceptable.

Will my boss think that I think poor of our relationships

Why would he? What does your relationship with him have to do with you asking him opinions about performance? That would be off-topic.

Sounds too anxious, but what if my boss never thought about my evaluation

Now, come on: you have a boss and you think he hasn't already judged/evaluated/assessed you? :D ;) A manager's job is, well, managing... and evaluating employees is part of his job.

Moreover, I wouldn't overthink making a stronger connection with your boss. Again, you've been there for 4 month: as per my experience, it took my boss 1 year to open up to non-job subjects during chit-chats.

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I felt the same way as you when I started on my first job, about not doing meaningful tasks or not being integrated to the rest of the team. Let me tell you that over time that feeling should go away. As everyone else said, performance reviews usually need a longer period of time to be somehow meaningful. Probably if you ask for one now you'll get a "we will do one in 2-8 months" or a very short "don't worry you are doing fine". So my recommendation is that you ask if this activity is going to be done sometime and when, and only ask for a meeting if you have particular concerns/topics in mind.

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