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“Kudos” is defined as “praise or respect that you receive because of something you have done or achieved.” Career success is paved by our achievements and accomplishments, which we hope are recognized – and rewarded – by those who evaluate our performance.

Making a habit of saying “kudos to me” is a great career management strategy. Why? It stops us from relying on others to determine our value. Taking credit for what we do well, even when not recognized by others, empowers us to set our career direction ourselves.

Keeping a “Kudos File” is a great way to track your achievements, and start getting in the habit of saying “kudos to me.” Here’s how:

  1. Decide where you will house your “Kudos File.” Will you use your phone, your computer, or a manila file folder kept in your desk drawer? Choose what works best for you.
  2. Search for kudos from others. Look through emails, dig up your performance reviews, check text messages. Anything that praises you, thanks you, or recognizes you goes into your kudos file.
  3. Expand your search. If you recall or have saved kudos from former jobs, put those into your file as well.
  4. Assess what you’ve got. Look for themes and trends. What are others recognizing you for with great frequency? What top strengths are emerging? What words in particular are others using to praise you? This is great content to have when revising your resume, showcasing your results at work, and evaluating your career goals.
  5. Start claiming your own kudos. What did YOU do well? It may be something you wished someone else recognized, but never happened. When you start giving praise to your good work you start owning what you did well, and you stop waiting for others to do this for you.

Keeping up with your kudos is a great habit that has long-lasting effects. Perhaps the most powerful is the shift that takes place from giving others the sole power to evaluate you, to you getting those answers yourself.


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