List Lovers: Discover the Bullet Journal for Work

I have a problem. Some might term it an addiction. I love lists. I need lists. I have lists for everything; I have lists of new lists to make. I have whole notebooks dedicated to my lists. And recently, I’ve found I’m not alone. Buzzfeed, Reddit, and Instagram have been populating the internet with images of lists, in the name of a new trend: Bullet Journaling.

Bullet Journaling is a style of tracking your life in a notebook. The term and the system was designed by Ryder Carroll, a digital product designer from Austria. Carroll struggled with focusing and needed a way to capture his ideas, so he developed this system. He has described the system as

“For the list-makers, the note-takers, the Post-It note pilots, the track-keepers, and the dabbling doodlers. Bullet Journal is for those who feel there are few platforms as powerful as the blank paper page. It’s an analog system for the digital age that will help you organize the present, record the past, and plan for the future.”Bullet Journal

So what does this have to do with the workforce? Bullet Journaling is not limited to tracking grocery lists or birthdays; job seekers, students, and employees can use a daily journal to visually track progress toward career or educational goals with lists such as:

  • To Do: Note the tasks that require your attention. Make use of the Bullet Journal symbols to track whether the tasks have been completed, migrated to another list, or scheduled.
  • Kudos: Track the compliments you receive on your work. Whether you are an employee with a yearly review coming up or a job seeker interviewing for a new job, you can pull out this list as evidence of the work you’ve done well.
  • Lessons Learned: Write down something you’ve learned that day or week, whether it is a new skill or a reflection.
  • Accomplishments: Record projects that have been completed or goals that have been reached. If possible, write down the outcome.
  • Progress: Break down projects or goals into manageable tasks, and track when each phase is completed.
  • Duties: Divide responsibilities into daily, weekly, and monthly tasks.

Communities have sprung up around the Bullet Journal trend, and among them are the Bullet Journal Professionals. Wondering why you should keep your own Bullet Journal as a workforce professional? Don’t worry; there’s a list for that.

The Benefits of Using a Bullet Journal at Work:

  • Organize and prioritize your responsibilities in one place.
  • Document growth and success in your career for reviews and raises.
  • Refer to the lists when building your portfolio or LinkedIn profile.
  • Record the ideas and plans that usually get lost in the shuffle.
  • Feel a sense of accomplishment from checking off completed tasks and projects.
  • Reflect on successes and missed opportunities.

If you’re a case manager in an American Job Center, consider sharing the benefits of Bullet Journaling with your clients. Maybe you could even offer a “Bullet Journaling for Your Job Search” workshop! If you keep your own Bullet Journal or something similar, be sure to comment and/or post images below. You can also check out our Bullet Journaling at Work board on Pinterest for inspiration.

Thank You for Your Public Service

Public Service Recognition Week

The first week of May is Public Service Recognition Week, honoring those who work as government employees on the federal, state, county, and local levels. The event has been hosted by the Public Employees Roundtable since 1985, with the purpose of promoting government careers, educating Americans about the importance of public servants, and recognizing outstanding public service (About Us). In proclaiming the celebration of this week, President Barack Obama reminds us that “At the birth of our Nation, our Founders fought to secure a democracy that represents the people, and the civil servants who pour everything they have into making a difference are the individuals who keep that democracy running smoothly and effectively.”

So this week we would like to say thank you to all of our readers who are serving the public, especially those in the workforce industry who work daily to connect job seekers to employers and training providers.

If you’d like to recognize someone in your organization as an outstanding public service employee, we’d love to read about that person in the comments. You can also send a story to be featured in the Faces of Government profiles by emailing

The Answer Is… What Is CTE?

February is CTE Month®, a month dedicated to spreading awareness of Career and Technical Education (CTE) and its role in creating an educated and skilled workforce who are prepared for in-demand careers. As the due date for the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) state plans draws closer (April 1, 2016), CTE is a topic on many state’s WIOA agendas.

The Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 is one of the 11 optional programs that can be included as part of a Combined State Plan for WIOA implementation. However, CTE must be addressed in Unified State Plans as well: Every state must describe how the six core programs will “align and coordinate” with CTE programs and activities currently in place and how the state will partner with CTE going forward (“Implementing FAQs”).

CTE is a vital part of education and career pathways for current and future generations in the workforce. CTE programs emphasize the integration of education and on-the-job training, with the end goal of the participant not only receiving a high school diploma, but also earning a post-secondary credential for in-demand career skills. CTE is organized into 16 Career Clusters® that offer specialized, streamlined instruction for following more than 79 Career Pathways. By offering stackable credentials, CTE programs ensure that students are not duplicating previous coursework but instead are earning certification and valuable experience that builds toward a post-secondary credential. These credentials incorporate work-based learning through internships and apprenticeships so students receive on-the-job training that prepares them for their future careers.

CTE Career Clusters

Did you know America’s JobLink (AJL) can help you track CTE providers and performance measures? When registering as a new training provider in the ProviderLink (Eligible Training Provider list) section of AJL, the school/institution can be identified as a “Public Community/Technical School/College” or “Private Career School/College,” which helps to identify CTE providers. Providers can enter their performance data for individual programs, while the public can search for and view provider information including program offerings and  provider Consumer Report Cards. Workforce center staff can add services/training from CTE providers to client records in ServiceLink and pull reports by school. If you have any questions about how to use this functionality, don’t hesitate to contact us (Brooke Patterson,

As your state prepares to submit its final WIOA implementation plan, you can learn more about CTE and its integration with WIOA through the following resources:

If you have any comments or questions about CTE and WIOA or have been involved in CTE programs yourself as a student, teacher, or administrator, please let us know; we’d love to hear from you.