When is the last time you celebrated (and I mean really celebrated!)? Did you end the year with a bang? Did you hit that milestone your team has been striving to hit for the entire year? Did you simply end the week having a good conversation with your executive team, with clear directions for the path forward? More often than not, I encounter builders, makers, movers, and shakers all making great strides in the things they are doing, but not pausing for a moment to celebrate the accomplishments they are making—even the “small” ones. Small victories are what get us to large victories. What does celebrating mean? To celebrate is to acknowledge (a significant or happy day or event) with a social gathering or enjoyable activity. Startup folks tend to get held up on the ‘significant’ term in the definition. Significant, to some, means raising a grandiose round, when in reality, significant can be very small and still meaningful.
Whatever is significant to you, I’m a big fan of celebrating it, and there is great success to be had when you celebrate.
Here’s a couple examples of how our portfolio companies celebrate:
Here’s some examples of when you can celebrate in you company:
- Birthdays: This seems easy enough, but these little celebrations make employees feel valued and appreciated. It means you have spent time remembering the person in the seat, not just the body in the chair.
- Work anniversaries: Little gestures to commemorate when an employee joined your team go a long way. Here’s a few fun gift ideas that can be a nice touch.
- A SDR’s first demo scheduled: While this is the first of many demos in their future, setting the tone of success is critical.
- An AE’s first close: As an AE transitions from the demo side of things, why not include more celebrating of this new type of close?
- Your first customer: Do a dance. Jump around. Blast music in your office (even if it’s the basement of your parent’s house). This is big news!
- The first time your product actually works: Some products take time to get here. Once the product is actually doing what you say it’s doing, celebrate. (And keep celebrating, because your product will evolve).
- The day you meet your co-founder: Maybe it’s a mixer, maybe it’s via email, either way, this is a big next step.
- And many more!
One last thing to remember before you head back to the office to celebrate: Write your celebrations down. When you’re in your “building week” aka “crappy week” revisit those wins and be inspired.
Cheers to you!