Celebration is powerful.

 In Communication, Culture, Employee Retention, Leadership, Strategic Planning, Success, Trust

What is worth celebrating?

Anything you want to be repeated.

Celebration has not come easy for me. I grew up with a father who had a strong work ethic. Finish one thing and then move on to the next. You shouldn’t expect to be congratulated for doing your job.

My father was rarely wrong, but he was about this.

Celebration is a powerful leadership tool that goes way beyond simply having fun. It focuses attention, enhances belonging, and increases the likelihood that the activity that triggered the celebration will happen again.

When we celebrate, there is a powerful chemical cocktail released in our brains. We get both a hit of dopamine and oxytocin. The dopamine makes us crave more of the same, and oxytocin makes us want to be part of the tribe. Oxytocin also enhances trust and reduces stress.

All this happens just by celebrating.

Here are some ideas from neuroscience researcher Paul Zak on how to make celebration more effective.

  • Spontaneous celebrations on the fly 
  • Express appreciation in tangible ways like a card or small gift
  • Make it personal – one size does not fit all
  • Make a big deal about goal achievement
  • Be public
  • Do it on a timely basis – don’t wait

Some of you might still struggle with this mindset. I know because this didn’t come naturally for me but I dove in headfirst and I’ve not once regretted it.

I’ve seen the power that praise can have in someone’s day, career, and ultimately, their life.

Our role as leaders is to take people places they could not or would not go on their own. If you’d like to chat more about how you can celebrate, motivate and encourage your teams – send me an email and let’s connect soon!


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