It’s that most wonderful time of the year…

Santa's Performance Review -- the Naughty or Nice list.

Christmas is the one time of the year when adults can be kids, celebrating a joy in the simple pleasures as a catching snowflakes on one’s tongue, or rooting around in the tops of closets to find hidden unwrapped presents.  It’s also the one time of year when kids get to experience the adult world — the dreaded performance review.

Performance reviews for kids appear dreadfully easy — you are either naughty, or you are nice.  If you’re naughty, you get coal.  If you’re nice, you get presents.

The challenge is, of course, that very few people have a clear definition of naughty and nice.  Sure, the law was laid down once upon a time in the form of the Ten Commandments, but the naughty and nice benchmarks seems to have separated from those guidelines long ago.  I specifically recall, throughout elementary school, Charley and his clique of cronies breaking Commandments 3 – 5 on a daily basis and showing off the most awesome presents after the break, upon such time the rest of the class, including me, immediately proceeded to break Commandment 10.  The Golden Rule is the next most likely benchmark for Santa, but I can attest to having broken that several times each year, even a few times during the week of Christmas a few years when I was pushing the envelope the week before the Big Day.

Perhaps we should take this one step further.  Its getting more and more the norm for the managers to ask their employees to submit their performance review by a certain date for the manager to review, adjust, and move on to HR.  Why should we selfishly hog that tradition?  From now on, all letters to Santa should be accompanied with a Let’s make December 23rd the deadline for all kids to hand in their Naughty or Nice self-evaluations.

Not that it’ll change their performance review on  Christmas Day all that much, but it’ll at least be a fun read.

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