Choose the story and set the stage
Select one achievement that you consider significant and aligns with your goals or the job you are applying for. It would be great to share some of the most accomplished events at work - perhaps with similar challenges or complexity. You can layer it with experience you have gained from your education, a personal project, or a volunteer experience. Start by setting the stage and provide a background. Describe the situation, the challenges you faced, or the goal you set out to achieve. This will help the listener or the reader understand the significance of your accomplishment.
Actions, obstacles, impact
Explain the outcomes or results of your actions. Quantify the impact whenever possible, using measurable metrics such as percentages, revenue, time saved, or people reached. Highlight the positive changes or benefits that resulted from your achievement. Share any obstacles, setbacks, or difficulties you encountered along the way. Explain how you navigated these challenges, demonstrating resilience, problem-solving skills, or adaptability. This adds depth to your story and showcases your ability to overcome adversity.
Your strength and the language you use
Identify the skills, qualities, or strengths that played a significant role in your achievement. If you can relate these skills to the requirements needed for the job you are eyeing, that would be great. These could be about leadership, teamwork, creativity, analytical thinking, or any other relevant skill. Explain how you utilized these strengths to contribute to your success. Make your achievement story compelling by using descriptive and engaging language. Paint a vivid picture of the situation, actions, and outcomes. Use active verbs and vary sentence structure to maintain and keep your listener or reader’s interest.
Edit, refine, and feedback
Review your achievement story and revise it for clarity, coherence, and impact. Eliminate any redundant or irrelevant information. Ensure that your story flows smoothly and that the most important aspects are emphasized. If you are working with a recruiter on a particular opportunity, share your achievement story with them. Otherwise, you can work with mentors, friends, or colleagues, and ask for their feedback. They can provide valuable insights, suggest improvements, and help you refine your story further.