Work Docs

Brie Wolfson shares a couple docs that help so you make more impact at work.

I like these docs, they're applicable for personal work as well.

They help you be more focused, context-aware, and in-control of your daily workflow.

daily docs

  • Ongoing Stack Rank (OSR)
    • what: a list of things you're currently/could be working on
    • why: overall picture of what's in flight or could be soon
    • how: show output only (shippable units work), include status of work (scoping, in-progress, ready-to-go, shipped, deprioritized), ordered by priority
  • "It's Only The Weekend When" Post-It
    • what: 3 things you would be disappointed to go into the weekend without completing
    • why: tells you what you should be doing right now
    • how: block time fo focus them, use actual post-it if possible to move them around and stick in various places
  • "What I'm proud of" scrapbook
    • what: a collection of things you're proud of
    • why: figure out work that truly satisfies you and gives you energy and make you tick
    • how: dump things as they come, a running list of screenshots, emails, kind pings, positive feedbacks.
  • Snag log
    • what: things that bogged you down
    • why: an outlet to express frustration and disappointments, reduce anxiety and not spread negativity to others; identify broader patterns in attitude towards work (are you more sensitive and neurotic?); preemptively address issues at work before they get worse (observe repetition in issues)
    • how: write down things that gave you the "ickies" or made you want to throw your laptop out the window. be honest with yourself when this happens. and the degree of the "ickies". examples from Brie: "still can't get this query to run!!" and "weekly standup bores me to tears".
  • Today, I Learned
    • what: list of things you learned
    • why: retrieve things when you need it, rewriting helps your brain encode information, perspective on what and how you're learning, as well as slope and rate of that learning (understand where you are in your learning journey, is it low or high-learning? "leave when you stop learning")
    • how: date them or batch by month (for timing and context), store technical details, things you might want to find later, personal details of colleagues, personal insights (energy levels, feedbacks)

monthly docs

  • Impact Tracking
    • what: all the things you shipped + impact
    • why: for performance session, train and tune your model about what work actually generates impact
    • how: focus on observable outcomes – what metrics moved, how metrics moved ,what users said or did, what colleagues said or did
  • Me-Sat
    • what: C-sat (customer satisfaction) but for our own satisfaction
    • why: answers: "what things should I lean into at work", hone in on the story you tell about yourself, about where you're at and where you want to go
    • exercises
      • satisfaction litmus test: score yourself between 1-4 on four core drivers of satisfaction: enjoyed it, got stuff done, progressed goals, learning
      • four lists: things I love doing, things i'm exceptional at, things I hate doing, things I'm bad at.
      • stop,start,continue: things you want to start, stop, and continue doing
      • cherish / change: left side of spectrum: things you want to hold on to (nurture or let it flow) / right side: things you want to change (more of it or less of it)

quarterly docs

  • Personal Press Release: all the things you shipped and the impact they have.
    • rely heavily on OSR + details from scrapbook, TIL, and snag log
  • Things to include
    • Headline/Lede: the attention grabber
    • One-line summary: imagine how someone would describe this to a colleague
    • Top 3-5 things you shipped
    • Where your time went
    • Key insights or learnings
    • Progress on metrics
    • Qualitative impacts
    • Contributions to the broader team/company
    • Feedback you received from stakeholders/users (internal or external)
    • One piece of art (graph, picture, screenshot, etc.)
    • Overall mood/sentiment
    • Anything the broader organization did that you wish you could have been a part of
    • What you're really proud of
    • Anything you're not so proud of
    • A look ahead on: What you're shipping next, what you're excited about, big opportunities for you, your team, or your company, and any foreseen blockers, risks, or things that you're worried about.