One of the best aspects of many newer communities is the design and focus on personal health and fitness together with a strong and healthy business community. When it comes to performance and success these factors go hand in hand. Personal performance is not only beneficial to your personal health, but it is beneficial to the health of your business or organization as well. This article is the final in a four part series on just four of the principles I have learned and teach from iron distance racing related to building and maintaining a winning culture in organizations.
Principle #4: Celebrate Victories
For me, training for an iron distance triathlon requires 20-25 hours per week for five months leading up to race day. In part three of this series, I quoted a mentor of mine who says, “The race is the reward for all the long, painful hours of training required to perform at your highest level.” This is absolutely true. However, five months is a long time leading up to a race of this magnitude. Crossing the finish line is the ultimate reward, but it sure does keep you motivated when you celebrate smaller victories along the way. Reaching certain benchmarks in training are great opportunities to celebrate. Small celebrations give you motivation to keep going. For me, a victory may be finishing a very tough month where several obstacles made it difficult to keep up with my training schedule. I may have missed a couple of workouts, but I pushed through and felt good about where my fitness level was. I might celebrate that victory by giving myself a night out to eat whatever I want off of my strict eating plan. Those celebrations help to keep me motivated to stay on track and keep my eye on the goal (part 1 of this series).
Organizations with winning cultures regularly celebrating victories. They celebrate the big victories as well as the smaller victories. Here are just a few ways organizations I have interviewed celebrate victories:
Shout Out Board. This is a great way for employees to celebrate with their peers when they have accomplished something significant. A simple note of encouragement posted publicly recognizing that employee for what they have accomplished is a small celebration that has a lasting impact.
Lunches or parties to celebrate the victories from the past month. These monthly celebrations are a time to bring the team together and publicly recognize not only the accomplishments of the past month, but the people who helped make those accomplishments happen. It’s a time for people to be excited for each other.
Incentives. Everyone likes a bonus, gift card, or other monetary reward of some kind to celebrate the completion of a task on time or a goal that has been reached or exceeded. Making incentives part of the culture can help keep people focused and working together so everyone wins.
No matter what the celebration of a victory looks like, that fact is that people feel valued, they are motivated, and morale is lifted when victories are celebrated. Individuals will succeed and organizations will experience winning cultures when they regularly focus on the four principles in this series:
(1) Keep Your Eye on the Goal; (2) When the Going Gets Tough, Keep Going; (3) When You Get off Track, get Back in the Right Direction; and (4) Celebrate Victories.