Career Woman

5 Benefits of keeping a daily business journal


Journaling is a powerful tool used by successful people to stay focused. In this world of distractions it’s almost impossible to conquer our goals. It’s not long before we become dissatisfied and give up on our dreams entirely. In keeping a daily business journal we stay organized, self-disciplined and productive.

You’re already wondering how you could possibly find the time to keep a journal of your daily activities. Life is busy and you already have calendars, emails and a myriad of other tools to log your work.

But a business journal isn’t a list of tasks that you completed. It’s your perspective and interpretation of everyday events. And it might just save you some big (maybe even legal) headaches down the road.

Here’s 5 reasons why everyone should keep a daily business journal.

1. Record conversations or events in greater detail than your memory

Unlike Sheldon from Big Bang Theory or Mike in Suits,most of us don’t have eidetic memories. Unfortunately circumstances can arise when you’ll wish you did have a more detailed account of a conversation or series of events.

While a journal is still just your interpretation of an event, and not legally admissible evidence, it will still be useful to have more than just fragmented memories of a conversation. Your journal entries might even help you recall where to find further evidence in documents or emails.

Your journal doesn’t need to record every word-by-word conversation you had that day (nobody has time for that!), but get in the habit of recording a brief bulleted overview after each meetings. Chances are you’ll never need it for legal reasons, but it can’t hurt to be too careful.

2. Track your progress against key performance indicators

Businesses use key performance indicators (KPIs) to evaluate the effectiveness of their decisions in meeting goals. Setting daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual goals in your journal acts as a constant reminder to align your actions with your goals.

When it’s time to conducting a self-performance review, you can measure your progress against your journal entries as well as other metrics. Use your own words to pinpoint what you’re avoiding, your weaknesses, your strengths and your passions.

3. Increase productivity by being mindful of how your day-to-day is spent

Recording your activities will increase your productivity over time. When you see how you spent your day, in writing, you may be encouraged to spend your time more wisely, or shift your focus to something better aligned with your goals.

If you’re struggling to keep track of everything you do, install a time tracking tool like Harvest or Toggl and categorize your time accordingly.

4. Become more self-disciplined

The self-reflection involved in journaling often drives motivation and self-discipline. Over time you might become aware of new interests you want to pursue, or areas in which you want to specialize. Putting your goals and motivations in writing solidifies a promise to yourself that is much harder to ignore. You’re confronted by these goals every time you read your journal. The desire to document success is powerful and motivating.

5. Improve your communication skills

Learning how to articulate your thoughts in writing will become easier as you recount conversations and events in your journal.

You will broaden your vocabulary, learn how to be brief but to the point, and become very attentive in meetings so that you can faithfully record it in your journal.

Pro tip

It’s a good idea to keep your journal private so you can truthfully record your day-to-day activities without judgement or fear. Whether you write it electronically or by hand, make sure it’s protected from prying eyes.

About Josephine Hardy

Josephine Hardy is the founder of InboundMate a marketing consultancy that helps businesses put their brand in front of the right audience. She combines her passion for writing and marketing with charitable work in the community. In 2017 she established a professional-womens-book-club with over 220 members who come together to discuss business, entrepreneurship and women’s experiences in the workplace.

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