Happy Labor Day to all! When was the last time you stopped to tell the story of your work life? You make a resume or curriculum vitae when looking for a job, but what are some of the stories that you want your heirs to know about your career?
How did you come to the job you are in now?
Why did you choose your particular career?
What exactly do you do?
If you have made changes over the years, what were the reasons for those changes?
What are some highlights and low points from your work life?
What was your first job and what did you learn from it?
These are some questions to ask yourself or your loved ones. Don’t wait for retirement to start thinking about telling your story! Start writing the stories down now.
What photos do you have that show different aspects of your work?
You may want to go back and get a picture of the building where you first worked.
A picture of you at your place of work.
A photo of you with coworkers.
At a company event, especially if you’re in the picture.
Photos or scans of any awards, certificates, etc. you received from work.
These are all things to be collecting over the course of your working life. They will come in handy when you do retire and family or coworkers want to do a slideshow, celebration board/poster, or photo book of your time in the workplace.
We recently did a retirement book for the head of Harvard University Health Services. We were able to get photos from the retiring director of his college graduation to his retirement party. It made for a great overview of his career, including the 23 years he was at Harvard University Health Services.
Regardless of who celebrates you and your work, you should celebrate the things you have learned, the people you have touched, and those who have touched you along the way. Celebrate the milestones and gather the photos and stories. You spend so much of your time working, when was the last time you really celebrated the work you do?