I am working in a team of around 30 people. I got a performance review this year and got mostly "meet" and occasional "above expectation".

However, I feel all my team members are strong and almost all members can reach this level. Is it a smart idea to ask my manager what rank in the team I got for this performance review?

I feel by this way, I can get a real perception of me in the team from my manager (at least he will tell me a level).

  • 1
    @MarkRotteveel I suspect the OP wants to know ranking - e.g., "you're #17 of 30". I could be wrong. Sep 28, 2018 at 15:34
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    @DanPichelman You may be right, but in that case it might be better if the OP edited it to reflect that. I still think such a ranking would not have much information value though. Sep 28, 2018 at 15:41
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    If I were a manager I'd feel very uncomfortable about "ranking" the people I managed in this way. I'd feel even more uncomfortable if someone asked me where they came in such a ranking. I really don't see the benefits to anyone in such a scenario, better to just ask what you're doing well and where you could improve and focus on that in my opinion.
    – delinear
    Sep 28, 2018 at 15:59
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    Generally managers prefer if you focused on your own progress instead of the progress of others. At most, I would ask what percentage of your team received this review or what level of your role you are performing at e.g. entry level, senior, staff etc. I would say away from asking for stack ranking (e.g. #17 of 30), because it's 1) very hard to do and 2) can create a lot of drama in the team which a lot of benefit.
    – jcmack
    Sep 28, 2018 at 17:03
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    Keep in mind that in many companies a 3 on a 5-point scale is perfectly acceptable. It means you are absolutely doing what you are supposed to be doing. At my last company we were specifically told that getting a 3 ("meets") was a good thing, 4 ("exceeds") means you're going above and beyond, and 5 ("greatly exceeds") should be very rare and reserved for the highest performers in the company.
    – David K
    Sep 28, 2018 at 20:19

2 Answers 2


But I feel all my team members are strong and almost all members can reach this level. Is it a smart idea to ask my manager what level in the team I got for this performance review.

I don't see how this can harm you, as long as you do it politely and professionally. It's worth noticing that this is something you feel not something that necessarily actually is, so chances are that you could be well above average.

Still, I suggest that if you want to know your ranking on the team try phrasing it something like:

"Hello boss. I just received my review results and was analyzing them. I see I got X and Y scores, but I was wondering if it is possible to know how this compares to the scores of the team as a whole. This way I can know in what areas to focus my efforts to improve myself, so I can contribute the most I can to the team."

This is more polite and assertive way of asking than plain asking for the ranking or the scores of your teammates, as it shows that you are willing to learn and improve and not just wanting to know who you beat on the review.

Have in mind that there could be a chance this information is not available, case in which I suggest you don't insist on knowing, and try to focus on the areas you could improve based only on your scores.


Is it a smart idea to ask my manager what rank in the team I got for this performance review?

Unless your company is in the habit of ranking each individual within the team, it's not a smart idea. (You could ask your manager if your company requires ranking.)

Generally, individual performance reviews are confidential. And generally managers don't want to get into a discussion about if you should have been ranked #9 instead of #12. Unless you are told you are #1 or #30, you won't know who is ahead of you or who is behind you.

And rank is not relevant (again unless the company is in the habit of ranking for pay raise purposes).

You would be far better served to concentrate on your performance and your own reviews rather than the reviews of anyone else. You career/pay/progress is impacted by what you do. If you are terrific, it doesn't matter if everyone else is terrific too. And if your performance is poor, it doesn't matter if others' performance is poor too.

Ask for your manager's perception of you if that's what you seek. Don't try to back into a calculation of it based on an irrelevant ranking.

Ask what "meets expectations" really means. Ask what "above expectations" means. And most of all, ask what you can do to get better performance reviews. Ask for specifics, based on what was written in your review, and what work you have in front of you for the upcoming year.

Focus on you, and what you can control.

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