An accomplishment tracker is the single most powerful tool you can have for your career and your bank account.
I call it my secret weapon.
💸 It’s helped me get raises, new jobs, and even side hustles.
But like any other weapon, you need to be trained in how to use it properly.
It’s just a couple of folders grouped together:
Here’s what they do:
✅ When to Use an Accomplishment Tracker
💪🏻 This is for measurable things:
– Processes or resources built
– Positive metrics due to an action you took
– Trainings completed
– What were you tasked with each quarter – did you achieve them?
Then when it’s time to update your resume or complete a self-assessment at review time, you have everything you need.
Kudos means praise.
It is also a delicious 90s candy bar but that’s outside the scope of this post. 🍫
This file is for anything complementary and can include emails about your work, notes on your achievements, performance reviews, awards, a message in slack, reference letters etc.
These are not just niceties.
We tend to underestimate the impact of things that come easily to us. But when people thank us or take time out of their day to mention something you did, it’s probably an asset – one you may be ignoring.
While this is mainly a resource to add things to the accomplishment tracker, it’s also really useful when you’ve had a crummy day or just aren’t feeling that great about yourself.
A whole folder dedicated to how great you are can be just the thing to bring you back to reality.
The STAR Technique
This is a way of organizing your accomplishments so they are the most impactful.
⭐️ STAR ⭐️
Situation – Context for what this was about
Task – What was meant to be accomplished
Action – What did you do
Result – What was the end result?
❓ Why bother with both these files? ❓
This is the ideal way to answer job interview questions. They also make great resume bullet points.
Now you have a stack of examples where you succeeded, and you can review them before any interview, or use them in performance reviews.
When to Update Your Accomplishment Tracker
I recommend jotting notes down during the week and scheduling time to update your accomplishment tracking spreadsheet once a week on Friday afternoons. It’s an excellent way to wrap up the week, and having it on the schedule will keep you from forgetting.
Don’t sweat it if you don’t accomplish something worth noting every week.
Once a quarter, you can use the actions and results section to add the most impactful examples to your resume and LinkedIn profile.
Keep it to your top five accomplishments for each job, or if those are all in one area, select a few that show your range of success in different areas of your job.
Not looking for another job, but want a raise or promotion? Meet with your manager to go over your accomplishments every six months.
Make sure to add the achievements to your self-assessment. This is not bragging. It’s taking control of your career growth. Besides, it’s hard enough to remember everything you did well in the past year, never mind remembering the wins of a whole team if you’re a manager.
Won’t I just remember?
We have something called recency bias, which makes recent things seem more important. But if a review is for a full year, or a resume is for your whole career, it should all be given equal weight.
Even worse – if you don’t document these things, it’s easy to forget them.
Keep this in your PERSONAL email, Evernote, Notion… Something with a tagging system that you can access no matter what, and that your company doesn’t control.
❗️Use a tagging system to label things like projects, metrics, praise, case studies, client saves, etc.
And if you want to be a great boss? Share this technique with your direct reports too!
When you have an overview of all your accomplishments and strengths over time, it paints a more accurate picture of just how fantastic you are.
PS – I have tons of resources like this for my 1:1 CS Leadership coaching clients. If you’d like to schedule a call with me to see if it’s a fit for you, book a call here.