How to Rebut an Evaluation
Difficult moments can occur in a person's professional career despite how proficient she is at her job. One example is a negative performance review. A poor evaluation is upsetting and can be detrimental to your future in a company. Consider issuing a rebuttal to an appraisal you believe to be inaccurate or unfair.
Resist the urge to react quickly to a performance review. You cannot make a cogent rebuttal in the heat of the moment. Look at your review carefully and listen to what your supervisor has to say. Do not immediately argue any point but tell your manager you would like some time to think about what he has written and said. Politely ask to take a copy of the appraisal home with you if your company allows this action. Don't discuss your evaluation with other employees and strive not to appear angry or upset when you return to your work area.
Give yourself a day or two to consider your evaluation. Review each point and attempt to objectively determine if each segment of the assessment was fair or not. Likely, there will be points you agree with and others you want to contest. Write down what you disagree with and why. Give direct evidence to back up your assertions. For example, if your boss has written that you are frequently absent, look at your records and determine how many days you missed and why you were unable to come to work on those days. If you only missed a few times during the evaluation period and had good cause, you can present this information to your superior as part of your rebuttal.
Put your rebuttal into writing. Craft a dated letter in response to the evaluation, in which you present evidence why you disagree, at least in part, with the performance appraisal. Begin by expressing your appreciation for your job. Thank management for the attention to your work and the opportunity to express your thoughts. It is then time to bring up the specific issues you have with your review. Be specific in your comments by citing pertinent examples. Do not exaggerate or misrepresent yourself. Admit to your errors but stand firm on what you believe to be inaccurate. Sign your letter and make a copy for your personal records.
Ask the supervisor who gave you your performance review to meet with you to discuss your concerns. Take your letter with you but begin the conference by speaking directly about your main issues. Give your manager a chance to review what he has written and to respond to each point you make. If he agrees that he has scored you low or made inaccurate comments, ask him to change the evaluation. If he refuses to alter his initial assessment, agree to disagree with him and ask him to include your rebuttal letter in your personnel file.