“The One Thing Successful People Do Every Day” is the name of an article I recently read on Forbes. The headline immediately grabbed my attention.
I mean, who wouldn’t want to be successful?
The writer William Arruda talks about the importance of keeping track of your “wins:” daily achievements, victories and self-congratulations.
He says you can do this by keeping a job journal.
“Busy” is the most common reason people give me for not doing anything to build their brand so they can advance their career. They make time for emails and meetings and teleconferences, but they don’t capture the true benefits of all those activities. Working in their career is getting in the way of working on their career. Sound familiar?
That passage resonated with me. I am a victim of getting caught up in “working in my career,” rather than “working on my career.”
Starting a job journal, will not only help me build my brand, but serve as a tool to chart my success.
Arruda outlines the importance of jotting down your daily achievements:
1. Acknowledge what makes you great. This includes daily victories. He says it’s a great confidence builder and helps you quantify and accesses your strengths.
2. Serves as a reality check. Instead of writing what you achieved, focus on how it made you feel.
This self-awareness is critical as you decide where you want to go with your career. It’s not just about “doing,” it’s about doing the things that energize you. This will also help you know when to take action, giving priority to the projects that will have the greatest impact for your career, your team and your company.
3. Helps you gain a clear understanding of what kind of work you are doing.
4. Better able to speak about accomplishments during meetings with the boss.
5. Easily able to prepare for final review or talk about your experiences when interviewing for another job.
At the end of the year, you’ll have a complete list of accomplishments – approximately 260 entries. You can go through the list and highlight, sort, combine – whatever suits your style. And you’ll have a competitive edge, because you’ll have well-organized evidence. Instead of a vague conversation.
Arruda did not mention this in the article, but I also think it’s important to write about your “losses” too.
Yes, it is important to focus on your successes, but what do they mean if you don’t have struggles?
Arruda, you have persuaded me to begin a job journal.
I will tweak my entries a bit, but I’m looking forward to this new endeavor.
If you are on the fence about this, he even offers three steps to help start your journey.
1. Be consistent.
2. Add it to your “to-do list” until it becomes a habit
3. Do it.
I think that this list could be simplified to just one step, which is the last step, “just do it.”
What are your thoughts?