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Creating a Culture of Celebration

February 18, 2020

Right now, culture is the hottest buzzword in the business world.

According to Forbes, 40% of people are planning to switch jobs in the next year and 69% say they are already passively looking. Another study shows 47% of people seeking a new job say that culture is the main reason they want to leave.

I’m passionate about helping organizations improve their culture, so they can have a more engaged, energized, and effective work life.

This is why I often talk about culture at speaking engagements and why ADDO’s resources equip leaders to foster and grow healthy cultures. 

Today, I want to unpack a core component of culture that could change your organization—celebration. Before you start organizing a party planning committee, here are three ways to think about creating a culture of celebration.

1. What’s celebrated is repeated. – Andy Stanley 

In other words, be careful about what you choose to celebrate. If you only celebrate people showing up to work every day—essentially, you celebrate attendance—this might be all that’s repeated. So identify what’s important in your organization. Is it closing sales? Is it creating a remarkable customer experience? Is it making sure your environment is safe? You’ll probably find that multiple things are important, but you must prioritize what you choose to celebrate. And once you’ve identified what you’re celebrating, lead the charge and encourage your team.

2. Your celebration should be relative to the size of the accomplishment.

It’s important to celebrate both the small things and the big things. But the big things merit a big celebration. For example, closing one sale definitely earns a shoutout at our team meeting. But exceeding our year-end sales goal earns a full-blown party (or in ADDO’s case, a company-wide trip to Cuba)!

3. Genuine celebration trumps contrived celebration.

Last month, it was announced that Jimmy Johnson, former head coach of the Dallas Cowboys and the Miami Dolphins, would be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. And the first time he heard the news was captured on live television.

Watch the video below:

Pro Football Hall of Fame: Jimmy Johnson – Class of 2020

Congratulations to Jimmy Johnson!The former Dallas Cowboys Head Coach has been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2020!(via NFL)

Posted by ESPN on Sunday, January 12, 2020


My favorite part of this video is the reactions of the people around him. These are all former football players and coaches, and they understand better than anyone the weight of this achievement. And they celebrate Johnson with genuine excitement! I think it’s important for all of us to learn from this. We should strive to be the kind of colleague and peer that’s eager to celebrate the wins of the people around us.

My charge to you this week is an easy one: celebrate. But remember, the kind of celebration that fosters a healthy culture is one that’s in response to what’s important to your organization, is appropriate for the size of the win, and is full of genuine excitement.


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