“A little progress each day adds up to big results.”

We all want to celebrate the successes and wins for our team or organization, but how do we know when and how we should celebrate?

When to Celebrate Wins

First, we need to be intentional about goal setting and ask “What does success look like for us?” and “How do we measure the achievement of success?”

Once we identify the short-term measures that predict long-term success, leaders must take the time to celebrate those small wins along the way.

When we think about progress, we often imagine how good it feels to achieve a long-term goal or experience a major breakthrough. These big wins are great—but they are relatively rare. The good news is that even small wins can boost inner work life tremendously.
Harvard Business Review

Why We Harvest Wins

Organizations harvest wins to build relationships with team members, which in turn begins to build a bank account of trust. Continuing to build relationships through our conversations and connections with each other helps us to get to know and relate with employees as individuals.

  • Make sure employees know how their work is contributing to the greater whole
    • People are the backbone of an organization
    • Eliminate we/they mentality by promoting an “us” relationship
    • Reassure and engage staff by connecting the dots around organizational decisions

How to Harvest Wins

  • Reward and recognize
    • Be specific, timely, sincere
    • Recognize in a way an individual would appreciate
    • “Drop in the bucket” — Don’t overlook the small things
  • Manage up colleagues
    • Encourage recognition between and among colleagues
    • Nominate peers for small token of appreciation award aligned to values
    • Start meetings with shout-outs
  • Show/model how great work supports the organization achieving excellence
  • Focus on gratitude
    • Formal and informal
      • Share in cards/emails: “you made me smile” or “you made my day”
    • Create an “Attitude of Gratitude” and cascade process down to students

 “Success is a series of small wins.”

– Jaime Tardy

Celebrating the wins is a critical component to organizational success. When we acknowledge the progress we are making as a team and share in the small victories, we motivate our employees to continue to achieve.

The Progress Principle: Of all the things that can boost inner work life, the most important is making progress in meaningful work.
Harvard Business Review

Related 9P Resources

Celebrate Wins that Matter – 9P Online

Ideas for Recognizing Your Employees – 9P Online

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