Lists = Life

The older I get and the more I learn, the more I am convinced of the incredible value of spreadsheets in every facet of life. I admit that bureaucracy can sometimes be a bore and turning soft and squishy things into admin can occasionally be life-draining, but I will never say anything bad about spreadsheets. I’m sorry. We owe them too much.

I’ve taken my spreadsheet dependence to its logical next step: my job search. I would really suggest this for everyone who is also pounding the pavement. My spreadsheet has a list of places I want to work divided up by industry, I identify my contacts from each company, and then I have a box for status (initial contact, met with them, follow up, etc.) and the date for when we last spoke so I can know and follow up with them if it’s been too long. This is also helpful because it is easy to see which companies I still need to make contact with or cold call. It’s invigorating to organize it out and check things off the list. When I’m feeling down and rejected and my leads seem to be going nowhere, I can look at my list and see that there are still things I haven’t done or tried and my motivation is renewed.

Remember obviously, that your contacts are people and your friends so don’t treat them just as “a number,” but it’s valuable to keep them organized so they don’t fall off your radar and they don’t forget you.

** I also have a separate spreadsheet for research which includes job boards, company-specific job boards, industry publications, business sections, and other applicable blogs and forums. You should make one of these too to keep on top of your game.

2 Responses to “Lists = Life”

  1. MIke B says:

    I think this is a great idea. I do something similar for creative writing…with a list of stories I’m writing or have written, where they’re located, who I’ve submitted them to publication, and the ever-hopeful column specifying how much cash I’ve made off of each one. Google Docs is great for this, since it can be accessed anywhere with an internet connection.

    I, for one, welcome our new Spreadsheet overlords.

  2. T says:

    LOL I did the same thing when I was job searching!! We’re psychic!

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