You Need To Be Tracking Your Accomplishments Now

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You’re scrambling through old work samples, trying to remember all of those milestones you reached last October. Let me guess, you’re about to embark on the job search again.

Accomplished word on file folder tab for jobs, tasks, projects oIt’s been awhile since you’ve been in-between careers. You might have to shake the dust off your old resume. And if you’re online portfolio hasn’t been touched since college, you have a lot of work to do to catch your online image up, to showcase your new, more experienced self.

You could be saving precious time and sending out resumes seamlessly right now if you had done one very important thing — many of us forget to do: keep a running list of your accomplishments.

Keeping a running list of accomplishments will help you:

  1. Recall experiences accurately, faster
  2. Have available metrics to draw from
  3. Have plenty of information to customize your resume and cover letter
  4. See your own trends

What’s the best way to document accomplishments?

Of course, you want to keep a master list of accomplishments from which you can pull the most impressive, relevant information, for a polished “brag sheet.” Apart from using your brag sheet, here are a few ways you can keep track of and show off those accomplishments:

  1. Use a mobile app. Choose a note-taking app like Evernote where you can record accomplishments to add to your official brag sheet later. Specifically on Evernote, you can save text, articles, audio notes, images, and even hand-draw diagrams. Tag each note with keywords like “brag sheet” to keep everything organized.
  2. Announce accomplishments on your blog. Each time you acquire a new client, receive a thank you note, or host a successful event, share it on your blog. You can share increases in organizational performance metrics or completions of projects you worked on. Just check in with the appropriate people to get permission to post any information you share publicly.
  3. Highlight your accomplishments on LinkedIn. Place a few outstanding “facts” from your brag sheet underneath each job description, in the work history section of your professional online job search profiles, or your resume.

Job duties and responsibilities give hiring managers an idea of your background and experience. But, accomplishments will show what you are tangibly capable of. Using numbers and figures to describe your achievements helps hiring managers “see” you in practice, not just theory.

  1. Put them in a Prezi. Prezi is a platform that lets you design an interactive, clickable presentation about yourself. In your Prezi, mention sales, percent increases, company ratings, reviews and new product launches. You can either embed your Prezi into your initial email to HR, or take it with you to an interview or quick meet-and-greet with the manager.
  2. Use your brag sheet as a “cheat sheet” for your references. In a recent blog post, I provided some tips for reaching out to references. When you reach out to your references, you can share a few facts from your brag sheet reminding them of your work together. Your references can use these facts when writing you a letter of recommendation.

When you know it’s time embark on a big job search, you don’t want to let anything slow you down or stand in your way. Keeping a running list of your accomplishments will help build your professional image and prepare you to share plenty of data-backed information about your abilities on the fly.

What have been some of your proudest accomplishments in your career? How do you plan to use them in your job search? Share with us in the comments below!

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta is the co-owner and leader of business development at CareerShift, a comprehensive job hunting and career management solution for companies, outplacement firms, job seekers and university career centers. You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, LinkedIn.