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Initiative: 25 Performance Review Phrases Examples

Initiative is a valuable skill for employees in any organization. It means being proactive, taking charge of tasks or situations, and seeking solutions without waiting for instructions. Employees who demonstrate initiative often excel in their roles, contribute positively to their team’s success, and increase their potential for career advancement.

Questions to determine an employee’s performance rating for initiative:

1. Does the employee take on tasks without being asked?
2. Does the employee go above and beyond their job duties?
3. Does the employee come up with creative solutions to problems?
4. Does the employee take ownership of their work and responsibilities?
5. Does the employee take the initiative to learn new skills and improve their performance?
6. Does the employee take the initiative to provide feedback and suggestions for improvement?

Based on the answers to these questions, you can assign a rating. For example, if the employee consistently takes on tasks without being asked and comes up with creative solutions to problems, they may receive a high rating for initiative. Conversely, if the employee only does what is required of them and does not take the initiative to learn new skills or provide feedback, they may receive a lower rating. It’s important to provide specific examples and feedback to the employee to help them understand how they can improve.

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Initiative Performance Review Phrases and Paragraphs Examples

5 – Outstanding

Example Phrases

  • Consistently thinks ahead and proactively addresses potential issues
  • Takes on challenging tasks and drives them to completion without prompting
  • Demonstrates exceptional leadership skills in developing innovative solutions
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Example Paragraph

“Jane consistently demonstrates an outstanding level of initiative. She is always thinking ahead to identify and address potential problems before they become critical. Her willingness to take on challenging tasks without being asked and her exceptional leadership skills when developing innovative solutions set her apart from her peers and contribute significantly to the team’s success.”

4 – Exceeds Expectations

Example Phrases

  • Frequently seeks additional responsibilities and opportunities to contribute
  • Proactively identifies issues and develops solutions independently
  • Demonstrates strong problem-solving skills and a commitment to continuous improvement

Example Paragraph

“Tom consistently exceeds expectations when it comes to initiative. He frequently seeks out additional responsibilities and opportunities to contribute to the team. His ability to proactively identify issues and develop solutions without waiting for direction demonstrates his strong problem-solving skills and commitment to continuous improvement.”

3 – Meets Expectations

Example Phrases

  • Regularly demonstrates initiative in taking on new tasks and responsibilities
  • Works independently to resolve issues and complete projects
  • Adapts to changing priorities and displays a positive attitude under pressure

Example Paragraph

“Sue meets expectations when demonstrating initiative. She regularly takes on new tasks and responsibilities without being asked and works independently to resolve any issues that may arise. Sue adapts well to changing priorities and maintains a positive attitude even under pressure.”

2 – Needs Improvement

Example Phrases

  • Occasionally takes initiative but may need guidance to complete tasks
  • Can be proactive at times but struggles to maintain consistency
  • Needs to demonstrate greater independence and problem-solving skills

Example Paragraph

“Bob’s initiative needs improvement. While he occasionally takes it upon himself to start new tasks, he often requires guidance to see them through to completion. He can be proactive at times, but struggles with consistency. Bob should work on developing his independence and problem-solving skills to boost his initiative.”

1 – Unacceptable

Example Phrases

  • Rarely shows initiative, often waiting for direction before taking action
  • Demonstrates a lack of independence and problem-solving ability
  • Frequently resists taking on new tasks or embraces change
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Example Paragraph

“Mary’s initiative is unacceptable, as she rarely shows any drive to take charge of tasks or situations. She often waits for direction before taking action and consistently demonstrates a lack of independence and problem-solving ability. Mary also frequently resists taking on new tasks and has difficulty embracing change.”

Posted in: Performance Reviews