Archive for November, 2014

November 5, 2014

Celebration in Leadership

When we talk about celebration and the holidays we are sometimes reminded that “holiday” comes from the phrase, “Holy Day”.  When something is holy it means it is set aside for a special purpose. When leaders set apart time to celebrate at work, they can help their team feel special and needed, two things employees find very motivating.

Here are some more ideas about leadership and celebration:

  1. Celebration creates milestones that mark progress and development in the organization and the work it does.  Not only does a celebration give staff a sense of direction and purpose, but it also helps prompt recognition of goals accomplished and personal growth realized. A good celebration “punctuates the sequence of events” such that people recognize in themselves and others the difference they’ve made and understand how they got to the goals they had originally set out.
  2. When a group celebrates an accomplishment in the life of the organization, the leaders are honoring the team and increasing the team’s sense of confidence and esteem. Team members who feel like they’ve made a significant contribution to the team are usually highly motivated to continue doing excellent work. An honored team is a healthy team.
  3. Celebration also helps create gratitude by reminding people of the blessings a team has experienced. This acts as a balance when times are tough or a team experiences a setback. In scripture, God tells the children of Israel to mark a place with stones to create a reminder of what God did for them and the generations to follow. Those future generations could then look back and be grateful for God’s leadership in their lives.
  4. To celebrate an important event reminds us of relationships we have in the organization and takes us back to bonding experiences. At one of our Christmas luncheons, an administrative assistant told a very funny story about a mix-up involving her parents and me. As usual, I was at fault. We still laugh about it to this day and it is special story that helped bond all of us together.

I remember my housemate who worked across from Symantec in a miserable job that celebrated nothing. The staff at Symantec would celebrate every week with beer, pizza and Frisbee on their front lawn, while my poor ol’ housie would sit with his fellow staff members wishing they could work for a company like that. And soon many of them did. One by one they would quit and find a place that took the time to celebrate them and recognized their accomplishments.


Are you celebrating your staff and what they’ve done? Try it and see if it makes a difference!