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In Your Small Business, Do You Celebrate Small Victories?

small-business-blogs-Entrepreneur-vixtoryChoosing to be an entrepreneur means you believed enough in yourself and your business concept to risk the security of a regular job, a regular paycheck. It gave you the opportunity to "live life on the fault line," as your business got launched and haltingly began to generate revenue, and maybe even some positive cash flow. Every major step forward was a small victory to be celebrated. You know the ones. Like your first customer. Your first good review by some industry press. Your first major contract. Did you allow yourself to celebrate them?

Small victories are what it takes to drive success. Sure we'd all love to have that big, earth-shattering victory, that win of a huge proposal over a half dozen other competitors or that industry recognition award that puts you in "elite" category in your sector. But, by and large, it's that small contract win, that customer endorsement or that new customer account that helps your company grown, year in and year out. To use an analogy from my avocation, baseball, where I coached for more than 30 years, it's playing for one run - "small ball" vs. waiting for the three-run homerun to win the game. While I'd love the big hit, I'll take the sure run, every time.

But it's not just understanding the importance of small victories; it's celebrating them that's equally important.

Now, as your small business has slowly grown, maybe even added a bunch of employees, do you still celebrate small victories? While today's might pale in comparison with those of the "early days," in importance to the overall success of the company, they're still important, especially, to key employees or customers (yes, you can and should celebrate customer "victories").

If you don't acknowledge and celebrate small victories, or maybe even never have, you should think about it as part of the culture you're continually creating for your small business. It provides the opportunity to recognize what individual or team achievement means to the company's success. The first sale by your newest account rep. The first defect-free delivery month for your new production guy. Or your development team delivering the new release, on time and bug-free (well, maybe not such a small victory).

It can also help you in solidifying the bond between your company and your customers by recognizing some of their achievements (whether or not you had a part in them). Like one of your customer's 100th year in business. Or, the CEO of one of your customers getting a big Chamber of Commerce award. Or one of your customers being able to reduce their product cost due to part you made for them, more cost-effectively.

And none of it has to be a big deal. People, no matter, whom or where, want to be recognized for their efforts. Celebrating small victories does that. Whether it's a pizza lunch, a plaque, flowers, a donation to a charity, no matter. Recognize them, both the small victories and those responsible, both inside your company and with your customers, and they will pay huge dividends to your success.

"The Entrepreneur's Yoda" knows these things. He's been there. May success be with you!


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