Effective goal setting and communication are essential for an effective postdoctoral experience. Quoted in 8 Ways to Boost Your Postdoc, Diane Klotz, the former director of NIEHS Office of Fellows Career Development, said “the single most important thing for postdocs is to have a plan that highlights what their ultimate goal is and delineates steps for achieving this goal.”
The annual performance evaluation is a critical opportunity for a postdoctoral scholar to meet and discuss goals, objectives, and performance. The process begins in a postdoc's first year when they complete an Individual Development Plan (IDP) with their mentor. Annual evaluations are then conducted through UNeVal, the University of Nebraska's employee evaluation system.
A reminder will be sent to the postdoctoral scholar and their mentor roughly two months before the evaluation is due. The postdoc initiates the process through a self-appraisal. The mentor then completes their evaluation of the postdoc and then they will meet and discuss. Since completion of the evaluation is a condition for contract renewal, it is critical that postdocs keep the Office of Postdoctoral Education informed about changes to their lab or mentor.