I have an employee who was put under my supervision this year after being a supervisor of another team for a trial period that failed.In addition he is the longest serving employee at the unit. He did a semi-good job this year, completing a number of complex tasks and people seem to get along really well with him and he is always willing to help. However, I do a simple self eval (as part of a official yearly eval to HR) that asks over the last year what projects did you like, what goals did you accomplish, and what did you learn. He put down 3 small projects, he has accomplished no goals, he did not learn anything, and he failed to finish many of the larger projects he was on.

I wasn't going to be to negative on him in my official eval, but to me it is like he is asking to be fired. I've never had anyone rate themselves so negatively. The rest of my team were positive in their self-evals, and I'm open to the idea that maybe I'm managing this guy the wrong way. He never asks for help. He does his best to help everyone. Now it seems unavoidable to come down on him and start being more hands on. How can this be handled without demoralizing the employee even more and without losing a valuable team member that everyone loves?

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    Is this really about project management? It would seem to be about people management. Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 21:21
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    Great question. Personnel and resource management is included in the list of topics in the FAQ.
    – jmort253
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 23:56
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    Personally, there has only been one instance where I ever cared about these sorts of things or felt they were valuable. Mostly, they've always been about how I was or wasn't living up to the manager's expectations or feelings about how I ought to be contributing. They had nothing to do with what I actually did or didn't contribute. And the manager didn't actually care what my strengths were, just what he or she felt they ought to be. Felt like school where nobody cared if I knew the material, just if I jumped through the hoops. Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 16:56
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    @LVSpiff, Can you tell what have you learned of this and this all turned out?
    – kroiz
    Commented Feb 9, 2013 at 0:38

20 Answers 20


He is communicating a message to you that has nothing to do with the self appraisal or what he thinks of himself. You asked him to fill out a form, and he returned it to you with three small, inconsequential items and blanks everywhere else. Mark hit it: he's not happy about something and he is letting you know. It could be as simple as he is not happy in his current role or something more cancerous like your appraisal of him is immaterial and he is barely paying attention.

So, I'd advise not to approach it like, 'you don't think you accomplished anything last year?' Instead, open up a dialogue and find out what is on his mind, bigger picture. This would be about you asking questions and letting him answer, with most of the talking coming from him. How are your listening skills?

  • I'm always open to listen and we talk regularly (his office door is right across from mine and we talk back and forth throughout the day. As he turned this in on Friday and I'm not in on Monday I haven't had a chance to speak yet but I hope that I'm as open to his ideas as he is to mine.
    – LVSpiff
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 20:57
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    I'd also ask why you, as a project manager didn't see this coming. Surely if somebody is unhappy for such a long period of time, you'll notice some signs. Employee can't just act and pretend to be happy all year long and then suddenly "ask to be fired". There might be something missing here.
    – CodeWorks
    Commented Apr 10, 2012 at 16:01

It sounds like you think he did a pretty good job this year regardless of what he said in his self evaluation, so you need to tell him that. Regardless of what he has written, if you believe he has achieved things this year worthy of mention you need to mention them!

It may be that he just could not really be bothered to spend the time looking back over an entire year to think of achievements. Maybe he doesn't believe that the appraisal process has any value - he has been at the company for a long time so maybe in his experience it makes no difference what he writes down in his self assessment. Is the self assessment a new thing? Was it clear what you were expecting? Does what he writes make any real difference?

He may just be a bit bored in his current role. If he has been there a long time he can probably do what he needs to without too much effort so maybe he needs another challenge. That is clearly not a supervisor role (not everyone makes a good line manager!) but maybe a technical lead role (I presume he is a technical person). Maybe he would be a good line manager but needs more mentoring so he has the right experience before trying a supervisor role again?

Ultimately you need to speak to him to find out what he wants to do and whether he is happy. There is no reason to change your appraisal of him negatively because he has been negative in his self appraisal. In fact you should probably go the other way (at least in the face to face meeting part).

This may also be a catalyst to meet with him (and the rest of your team) more frequently one on one. A regular one on one meeting would enable you to find out more about what excites him and how to best manage him. It also gives a great opportunity to give him regular feedback on his work.

Oh and no one really asked to be fired they generally just quit so I doubt that is the reason for the negative self appraisal :-)

  • Unfortunately not spending the time on a self eval is looked down on - its part of the eval process and eveyone is told to keep a running list throughout the year. Every quarter I check on goal progress and re-do them as necessary. Everyone has to do one but its up to the supervisor to form the questions. I'll definitely speak with him and see whats up. We work across the hall from each other so we talk daily and I haven't noticed anything lately but maybe there is some underlying thing he is thinking about.
    – LVSpiff
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 20:59
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    I've known people who tried to be fired because they had an employment agreement that had a penalty if they quit and they already had a different offer. Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 21:02
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    @LVSpiff be careful thinking about everyday conversations being the same as a specific one on one meeting. They tend to have quite a different focus. The day to day conversations tend to be very project centric and often don't cover more general happiness/career progression type topics which a one on one would. Day to day conversations are great and really valuable but I recommend doing a one on one as well. Also re the self appraisal, he should be spending time filling it in properly especially if it is part of the process, so this is something you need to raise in your appraisal
    – dlongman
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 12:38

Misusing a Metric

No one else has really covered this, so I'm going to point out that this appears to be a misuse of a management metric. Specifically:

He did a semi-good job this year, completing a number of complex tasks and people seem to get along really well with him and he is always willing to help.

That's the summary of the actual management metrics. That's what you should be using to evaluate someone for raises, retention, or termination.

What Does the Self-Evaluation Actually Measure?

You haven't really articulated what the self-evaluation measures or how the metric should be used. If a self-evaluation is the core criteria for raises, promotions, or termination decisions...well, I'd like to join your company and self-evaluate myself a billion dollar bonus. --What? That's not what self-evaluation is for? What exactly are you using it for, then?

In some companies, self-evaluation forms are a form of "guess what I think of you" game. If you get it wrong by evaluating yourself too high or too low, then there are organizational consequences--just like when you say:

[I]t is like he is asking to be fired.

Objectively speaking, his evaluation didn't match yours. That's all the factual information you can glean from this metric; absolutely nothing else. The rest is your interpretation of the metric, or your emotional reaction to it.

What Can You Actually Infer?

You could legitimately infer that this person either has different values than you, or doesn't view the evaluation process the same way you do. You can also certainly infer that he doesn't perceive his role or job performance the same way you do. That is a call to constructive action on your part, which needs to start with opening a dialog.

Assuming that someone who you describe as helpful and easy to get along with just gave you a big "up yours!" based on a single fill-in-the-blank form seems unreasonable. Even if that's the case, a project manager that's unwilling to evaluate whether a given process (in this case, self-evaluation) is a contributing factor to a perceived problem is creating a morale problem, not solving it.

Metrics and evaluations give people things to talk about. So talk about them! Until you do that, it's all just guesswork anyway.

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    +1 As this was what I first felt. If there was space to talk about success failure of various projects and I had 3 successes and one failure. I would certainly report that. It might be worth challenging him on the "not learning anything" from the failure. If you don't learning anything from a failure, then that is an area worth exploring. Commented Sep 24, 2012 at 20:20
  • You could legitimately infer that this person either has different values than you, or doesn't view the evaluation process the same way you do? or that he isn’t as good as the OP at filling out the form.
    – jmoreno
    Commented May 17, 2019 at 0:14

As an introverted individual, I feel the need to punish myself when I make a mistake. Some of my introverted friends have confessed to the same compulsion when they've let themselves (or others) down. Sometimes, the way we punish overselves can be very damaging.

In the case that you describe, I could see myself behaving in a manner similar to your employee. Having been given a position of trust and responsibility, I must now admit that I was not capable of holding the position. At once, this would cause me to doubt my ability and it would cause me to want to atone somehow, perhaps by giving myself a bad review.

Since I know neither of you, I cannot say whether this personality profile matches your employee. However, if you judge that it might match, I would suggest that you attempt to acknowledge their negative review. Like a biblical character atoning for their sins by whipping themselves in public, the fastest way to get people like me out of their "public spectacle" phase is simply to acknowledge it.

After this, you can get to the heart of the matter:

  • You still made positive contributions
  • The team still holds you in high esteem as an individual contributor
  • It's important that you learn from this experience
  • Let's generate goals that will lead you to success this year

Yes, the compulsion to punish oneself or publicly atone can be unhealthy. I am not saying it is good. I'm only attempting to describe what could be happening: good, bad, or other.

Good Luck

  • Interesting analysis. There is a very strong likelihood that you hit the nail on the head with this assessment. However, I've always heard introverts are just people who are re-energized by being alone. However, feeling the need to psychologically flagellate oneself could perhaps be a sign of a deeper issue, one that's not limited to just introverts. I've also heard of extroverts mentally punishing oneself as well, usually in a much less subtle way.
    – jmort253
    Commented Jan 26, 2012 at 7:11
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    @jmort253 Thank you. You are likely correct when you suggest that it could be a sign of a deeper isssue. Nonetheless, if the issue exists it would be outside the scope of a manager to tackle it with their employee. However - observing it, understanding its implications, and then leveraging that knowledge in your dealings with the employee is a critical skill of people-centered management.
    – John Ruiz
    Commented Jan 27, 2012 at 16:32

Before he was your employee he failed at being a supervisor. It is possible that this negative view started in his previous position. He may be asking "what role do I have in the organization?" If you value his input to the rest of the team, you might look at formalizing that mentoring so that it can be seen as a goal.

I do assume that his goals were rewritten after his last transfer. This is important to do not just on an annual basis. As the needs of the organization change, so should the goals of the employee.

Start the conversation with: I should have communicated your role better, and I should have done more to strengthen your view of your importance...

  • This was precisely my first thought, and the OP even started the question with it. Being given a leadership opportunity "that failed" can be a serious blow to one's ego. It sounds like he's still a great asset to the team but doesn't realize it himself, thinking only of his failure. Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 2:56

Sounds like they are not happy with their current position. Have management (whoever moved him under your supervision) tell him that even though he is now under your supervision that he is still very valuable.

You should communicate to management that he is valuable. Find out his longer term goals and see if you can arrange a roadmap for him with management on how he can meet his longer term goals.


Who set goals with this employee for the year?

How many projects he was assigned to and did not complete were due to a change in management focus?

Do you meet with him weekly to keep up on how things are going with him, and to update progress on goals?

How many of his assignments are given to him because he's the one who has always done that kind of work? And filling his time so he has none available to do other things?

Have you considered that your other employees are inflating their self-evaluations, and this one is being absolutely as candid as he can?

You don't need to answer those questions here, but think about them in relation to any additional data you have about his behavior.

In case you can't tell, I've been in his shoes, at least from what you've described. I got over it via management changes two levels above me. Once the incompetent Manager Once Removed was released and my team distributed, it took a year to regain some confidence. And then I got a team again, and we've been highly productive since, without the jerking around from above.

I recommend Manager Tools (http://www.manager-tools.com) as a great source to help you connect with him better. Find the podcasts on One On Ones in the "basics" feed, and start there.


Perhaps he is unaware of his worth and contributions or thinks that they are not-worth mentioning. Or maybe he is judging himself negatively due to reasons he could not control.

Try letting your employees know when they are doing a good job instead of waiting for reviews.

Maybe something was in his way in the failed project. Let him know that he should tell you if and when something is preventing him from completing an assignment and do not count assignments that got were not completed due to reasons that the reviewed employee can not affect.

E.g. other tasks on which that task was dependant not being completed on time or in a satisfactory way, bureaucracy, problem with tools, insufficient definitions of requirements, ...

Also, make sure you ask "what do you think needs changing" in the periodic reviews - not everyone brings up issues if not asked to and the answer to this question can let you know if something is preventing your employees from working efficiently.

Include non-personal tasks in the review - helping others is just as important. See my answer here for details on this.

Remember, periodic reviews enable both employees and organizations the chance to reflect and self improve.

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    I think you summed up best how we all should handle our team reviews: Don't wait for reviews, one should always let their team know where they stand. Reviews should be continuous and informal. +1
    – jmort253
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 0:46

The question that comes to my mind is in regards to the age of this person. If he's been there a long time as you say, then he's likely a Gen-Xer instead of a Gen-Yer. Generation X people tend to like to be left alone and may view self evaluation type things as something someone might do in a therapy session or something one might do in high school.

If this is indeed his view, it doesn't necessarily make him a bad employee, he probably believes that his record should speak for itself and there is no need to waste his time on something that is really trivial. (Okay, it's not trivial for you, but in the big picture, it's not something that affects the outcome of his work or how happy the customers are with the products or services he works on.)

I know older people who are like this, and they have very cynical attitudes when it comes to this type of management. In summary, you can't manage GenX-ers the same way you manage Gen-Yers, and I believe this is true of any generation.

Like others said, the best way to approach this is to talk to him, give him the room to be frank, and don't judge him if he opens up and tells you it's a waste of his time. Everyone brings value to the organization in some manner, and it sounds like he's proven himself enough to where he's outgrown the need to fill out self-evaluation forms. :)

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    Beat me to it. Many people simply consider things like self-evaluations to be a complete waste of time and would rather be doing what they consider to be actual work. If you try to force them to spend time on what they consider to be useless management gobbildygook, you're going to get poor quality results out of it because they'll blow through it as quickly as possible to get back to their job.
    – Tridus
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 12:15
  • I also believe it's a quick way to help your long term employees get over the pain vs. change hump. People don't usually change anything until the pain of the change is less than the pain of staying the same. "Management gobbildygook" is one way to help your personnel get over the fear of change and work up the courage to take their skills elsewhere. :)
    – jmort253
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 15:36

Answering twice from different perspectives, this is the second one.

A self evaluation is either a bit of communication, or a waste of time. Which it is depends upon what you do with it. A negative self evaluation isn't something that has to be handled, it may lead to the discovery of a situation that needs to be handled, but at the moment all you have is a bit of communication. The self evaluation that you describe certainly isn't glowing, but it's neither a request or grounds for termination.

If this evaluation concerns you (and apparently it does), then talk to him informally, expand upon this bit of communication.

For instance, he says he completed a couple of small projects, and didn't mention the complex tasks that you feel was more worthy of mention. Ask him about that, ask why he included the ones he did.

Basically just talk to the guy. Either that or admit that the self evaluation is a waste of time and ignore it.


I cannot give any other answer than talk to him, but as a manager you got yourself to a minefield. If I were you I won't make a move until I know more about the circumstances. Talking to other colleagues, check earlier reports everything (but don't spy on him, because it is not ethical :-)).

When I read your question I pictured your colleague as a man who is sad at the moment. Since there were no other prior indicators of a bad performance so it can happen that you had the evaluation discussion simply at the wrong time. Your task as his supervisor is to find out whether it is really sadness or he is desperate.

If you approach him and ask more questions he will be more sad, may stay in the organisation but his performance will drop. On the other hand, a desperate co-worker might leave your organisation which is also a disaster. If you just leave him alone will bug you all the day/week/month/year. You cannot really solve the situation without proper preparation.

So I suggest to give him a week or two, see how he behaves and performs, offer him a beer after work, get to know him better.

I had a colleague like him a while back. He did his job, but his evaluation showed a low self-esteem. There was nothing wrong with him, it was his nature, and he just wanted to do his job, and he was never satisfied with his work; his own bar was set too high. His former managers tried to motivate him with every possible technique one could find in management books and none of them worked. It took some time till someone had a hunch about his character - nobody will come by and tell you that he has low self-esteem -, and we started to work with him accordingly; we simply let him do his job which he liked. No meetings, no evaluations nothing. Just work. And it worked...

  • It doesn't sound like he's unmotivated. I don't believe it's a motivation problem as the op says he does a good job. It sounds to me like either a self-esteem issue -- which doesn't necessarily mean he's unmotivated -- or he thinks self-evaluations are stupid. +1 for get to know him better and know more about the circumstances.
    – jmort253
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 0:05

Is he keeping track of his achievements on a regular basis? If an evaluation spans an entire year (or even half a year), I know that I find it difficult to remember everything that I have have accomplished. This is especially true if the evaluation is happening in a more difficult period, when the project might not be going to well. Keeping track of everything - good or bad - on a more frequent basis (weekly or biweekly) than evaluation time is probably a good idea. My supervisor also keeps these weekly updates and uses them during evaluation time as well, since they highlight major accomplishments and difficulties over the past year.

Second, consider using 360-degree feedback. This should help you weed through biases of individuals, including the employee himself, you, or an individual team member. Having feedback from a range of individuals who work with this person should provide a much more comprehensive view of his abilities, skills, and weaknesses. You do have to weigh the feedback appropriately based on the interactions with the person doing the feedback and the person being assessed, but it should provide weight against his negative contributions.

When you are doing your evaluations of him, be honest. If you think he's a good employee, add those comments during the evaluation. Don't base your evaluation on his evaluation or the evaluation of any other individuals.

Finally, I would recommend talking to him. Try to figure out what the problem is and correct it. Although I think the first three options would improve things a great deal.

  • 360 feedback is in place - that should be a good start to know what sort of issues my team has with me. I do quarterly reports and weekly email updates to my team. The self-eval process has been in place since I got here and every unit member has a running list of achievements that is updated throughout the year. Thank you for the advise though it sounds like I need to talk to him more than anything.
    – LVSpiff
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 21:06
  • @LVSpiff Does this employee record his accomplishments honestly and fully on these weekly email updates, and is he using them when filling out the year evaluations? That seems like a good place to start the conversation - show him the fact that he's making contributions to the team and organization throughout the year. Also, I was thinking more of the 360 around him - have team members evaluate each other as well. He might not have any direct reports, but colleagues would be able to provide feedback.
    – Thomas Owens
    Commented Jan 23, 2012 at 21:38

When talking about evaluations, there are always two sides: the optimistic and the pessimistic / realistic.

Having this in mind, the first question to be clarified is:

  • Has he accomplished any goals?
  • Has he learned anything?
  • Has he successfully finished any projects he was on?

Based on the answers of these questions, you can open an honest communication channel with him. Sometimes, people cannot see the bright side of things... and even if they have a glance of it, it's obfuscated by all problems happened during the period.

Also, he might be being over critic with his own performance, expecting you to present him his qualities that he wasn't able to see during the period. I tend to prefer to have around over-critic persons rather than what I call Disneyworld-mind programmers (who really seems to live in Disney land, thinking that a couple of codes would deserve a promotion).

Besides, it's hard to believe that he failed and didn't learn a thing. These concepts are opposites and can't exist at the same time... if he failed, he learned a lesson. Maybe, he needs to be introduced to concepts like 'lessons learned'.

In my point of view, is also important to highlight that if someone performed poorly during the period, part of the problem falls into his coach, who didn't action in a timely manner.


There's a communication gap between you both. Sit down with him and align your expectations for the next period, letting clear his highlights, identifying his flaws and making a plan to track them for the next period.


Short answer. Sounds to me like the failure to lead another team has made him feel trapped in his role, like he no longer has any potential for advancement.

I've actually felt this way in a position before and had a similar self-evaluation.

"Having done well doesn't matter, I'm going nowhere, so I'll be honest about how much I actually feel I can do here."

find out what goals he had that didn't get accomplished, what he'd like to learn. If he could change anything about his career with the company or otherwise, what would that be?


Going to answer twice from different perspectives. This is the first one.

I wasn't going to be to negative on him in my official eval, but to me it is like he is asking to be fired. .... Now it seems unavoidable to come down on him and start being more hands on.

You require a self evaluation, you get one that is less than glowing and now you want to either give the poor bastard that gave you an honest opinion the boot or hammer him with "hands on managment".

Go ahead and fire his ass, you should do so as publicly as possible while proclaiming that it was because his self evaluation revealed his secret desire to be fired. That way at his next job he'll know to blow smoke up his boss's butt instead of trying to answer honestly, and your other employees will know the importance you attach to their feedback.

God forbid that you simply have a conversation with him to find out why your evaluations differ....


You have answered the question by yourself: He's the longest serving employee at the unit. He never asks for help. He does his best to help everyone.

So how do you expect him to get any real work done? He's the unit's Information Center.

That's why he thinks he did not learn anything; he is the one teaching others.


  • What projects did you like?
    • 3 small projects!

Reason: All the other projects he was The Consultant. You can't expect him to like projects he didn't finish.

  • What goals did you accomplish?
    • He has accomplished no goals!

Well, it's not clear what his goals were, but he probably never intended manning the unit's Information Center.

  • What did you learn?
    • He did not learn anything!

He probably doesn't realize how much he learnt, since he feels he spent his time teaching. This could also mean that he's making it clear that he hasn't been sent to any courses, seminars, etc. recently.

  • He failed to finish many of the larger projects he was on!

Unless it's some tiny projects, he's going to get distracted every time he tries to get work done.

How can this be handled without demoralizing the employee even more and without losing a valuable team member that everyone loves?

First you need to figure out of he's really demoralized. Some people enjoy being in that role.

If that's where he wants to be, then ensure he isn't put on any large projects, as that won't be good for those project, nor for his morale.

If he doesn't like the role, then maybe enforce quiet time for him, a few consecutive hours daily when nobody will disturb him so that he can get some real work done.

Ask him if he wants to go to courses or seminars to keep up-to-date or learn new things. (First find out your budget for those.)

See if he wants to be promoted - or given a title - reflecting his role.


I have no experience in project management whatsoever but my first thought was symmetry:

Imagine before he was a supervisor he never truly tried to envision what a supervisor exactly did, he just did whatever he had to do as someone below.

Then he became a supervisor. Immediately or only after a while things went wrong (and typically different people have different ideas of what exactly went wrong, so assume he knows more details of whatever went wrong back then than you).

Now let me freestyle:

Imagine there was one (or less probable but certainly possible more than one) person in the team he supervised, and with whom there were problems (communication, execution, whatever) and that he realized there was a problem. Back when he took the self assessments he was probably hoping to possibly find out more (just like you do now). Instead, he got a similar result you now enjoy. Time passed and things got screwed up as he failed to find out the "but why?".

He is put out of the supervising position, and probably agrees rightly so: He knew and knows that there was a problem and did not find the way to solve it. However, ever since he was appointed supervisor (and now still), he realized his previous disinterest in what a supervisor really does was a bit closed minded.

He is actually very assertive and willing to learn. He is not angry, just curious how a good supervisor would handle it. Hence, he is complimenting you (he thinks youre a good supervisor else he would not consult you in vivo). By giving you the same treat (think like the movie "The Ring") he hopes to learn from his mentor.

  • so dont panic! just do the right thing, whatever that is, and quickly before you come to your senses. If not he will continue his experiment and not actively create but allow similar problems he faced to rise against you, after which you could be put to a lower position. Take solace that even if this happens, you can cure yourself by doing to the next supervisor what the old supervisor did to you :) the world can be simpler than you think sometimes...
    – propaganda
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 10:39

If you don't mind my being direct, I think you need a relationship with him, and you need to give him much more regular feedback on his performance both good and bad? The fact that you are misaligned in his and your understanding of his performance is for me the red flag. Since you state you are open I will provide a frank suggestion - I think you have the bulk of responsibility in addressing that as the manager - my tip is to start here with the "basics" series - www.manager-tools.com. From this will follow all the other advice in other responses - get to know him, learn his goals, learn his history. He sounds like he is a good achiever and you should work to retain him. It's now your opportunity to grow as a manager.


Self evaluations are bullshit. They do not make the staff feel "included" or "empowered." You know what I did. Tell me what YOU did or did not like about it. In my position, the first stupid question is "name your successes." Well, I'm a legal assistant. I do the same job every year. There's not much room to innovate. You answer calls, do the work, etc. Where I am better at this than the average bear is I can figure out answers to my own questions using information available to me, I can critically analyze issues, I stay late to get important things done. This shit isn't "successes." It's my work ethic, and YOU know I did it because you were there watching it be done. Self-evaluations are a giant waste of time from touch-feely corporate bullhockey land.

  • Welcome to PMSE. While some may agree with your opinion, as posted it is a rant and doesn't answer the OP's actual question about how to handle the situation. Please edit your answer to be an answer and not just an editorial. Without edits, it is likely to be downvoted and eventually removed.
    – Todd A. Jacobs
    Commented Jan 10, 2016 at 15:39

Most of the time, it is the case. People are severe in their self-evaluation because they do not want to appear too challenging to their boss. But what is the point of a self-evaluation? It is to get a feedback from an employee on how he percieve the achievement of his objectives set by his manager (and him?) at the beginning of the project. Some say that there is no point on doing a self-evaluation or that it is not an objective way to evaluate an employee. I do not buy that. Most of the self-evaluations I did in my carreer were a way to express how I felt doing the job. What were my good and bad points. I would add a section in your self-evaluation form called "Employee comments". In that section the employee can write anything he wants, so his manager can be aware of a situation that he could ingnore. If you have an evaluation process on a 100 points base, I would dedicate only 10 points to the self-evaluation. That way you are sure to have a feedback from your employees and keep the global evaluation process fair for all employees. But now a day they are few compagnies who apply an objective and fair evaluation process, but that is another question.

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