I’m sure many of you have either quit, formally resigned, or have been downsized from a job at some point in your life. But I wonder, how many of you took the time to grab some career-critical information before you left?
I know personally that when your are being laid off, (1) you are not thinking completely straight, and (2) you may be monitored as you pack up your personal belongings to make sure you don’t walk away with any proprietary company information.
As a professional resume writer, I can’t tell you how many times I ask a client for key information about their past accomplishments or goals, and they don’t know! To make things worse, they have no way of getting that information now that they’re gone! So what do I need to have and how do I get it? I’m glad you asked…here’s some of my best answers:
- Grab your old performance reviews with manager comments and ratings.
- Don’t forget your personal work journal (that you’ve been using to document all of your great accomplishments and key project metrics and deliverables).
- If you create a weekly or monthly report – get those too (especially the ones you are most proud of)!
- Every pat-on-the-back email or kudos you receive should be forwarded to a personal mail account.
- If you have monthly job performance metrics, start keeping a record of how you performed to those goals.
- All certifications, awards, and records of development courses you completed on the job.
- If allowed, grab contact information from some of your best colleagues, bosses, and collaborators. You may want to keep in touch or ask for references and you’ll need to know how to reach them.
- If possible, ask the IT department (if there is one) to burn a CD with all of your personal files. This may take significantly less time than sending bunches of large email files, especially if there are graphics involved.
These are just a handful of things that you should try and keep current, especially if you don’t foresee yourself staying in the same job forever (and really, who does these days). One way to make this manageable is to create an alarm for every 3 months (quarterly) and send these items to your personal email account or keep all meaningful content in your work journal, and make sure you grab it on the way out!
COMING SOON! My new e-book, “Your Resume is Not Enough: How to Network Your Way Up the Corporate Ladder,” is coming in March 2013. Limited print versions will be available for pre-order in January and February. For inquiries, please contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.