March 31, 2020
Having a structured way to keep track of your noteworthy accomplishments will help you be at your best when review time rolls around. It can also prime the mental pump when you're feeling struck trying to revise your resume. This spreadsheet offers a basic framework for recording your achievements, feedback, and activities throughout the year, simplifying the self-evaluation and review process.
Documenting your year:
One of the most effective ways to keep track of your projects and activities is to jot down a few words about them—in real time or near real time—so you don’t forget what they were. You can include as much detail as you want, but even something like “Evaluated accounting packages” may be enough to jog your memory. You don’t have to invest a lot of time in this process, either—a couple of minutes here and there is much better than dealing with The Gaping Void of Lost Memories later.
If you have more than a couple of minutes, consider dashing off a sentence or two that captures what worked/didn’t work, what you might do differently next time, and any data you can scare up that supports the success of the projects you’re most proud of. How should you approach this recordkeeping process? You could go old school and write on a legal pad or in a calendar book. You might take the spreadsheet route, maintaining a workbook with tabs for various categories of events and activities. You could record voice memos or use a note-taking app like OneNote, Evernote, or Google Keep. And there are scads of online and mobile journaling apps out there waiting to make this an efficient and painless task. The main thing is to find an approach that’s sustainable for you—because the key is to stay as up to date as possible.