Every Friday, we’re answering your questions about business, startups, customer success and more.
This week’s question comes from Guy Riese, who asks:
@Groove Question for Alex’s Friday Q&A: How do you celebrate successes as a team, remotely? Thanks !
— Guy Riese (@Guy_Riese)
I love this question, because it’s a huge challenge for so many remote teams.
With co-located teams that have strong cultures, it’s obvious what you can do when your team has a big win. Parties, dinners, even a quick group gathering in the break room can be a great way to celebrate a success.
But when your team is spread across the entire world, as ours is, that becomes harder.
Yes, retreats are important. And when you meet in person, you should celebrate the big victories that you’ve achieved since your last meeting.
But what about smaller wins? Or ones that happen well before your next planned in-person meeting?
There are two key things that we do that any team can duplicate:
1) Celebrate in Slack
We have a Slack room that’s used for nothing but celebration, called #lil-bit-of-awesome.
Here, we share good news about Groove; positive emails from customers, press and blog mentions, metric milestones and more. Importantly, it’s also where people can give their teammates shout-outs for jobs well done.
It seems like a small thing, but having this dedicated space is actually a big deal for us. Anytime I see that room light up in the sidebar, I know that there’s good news, and I rush over to see what it is. It’s like getting a power-up multiple times per day.
2) Celebrate on Regular Calls
We have a short team huddle on Google Hangouts every day. They last ten minutes (except for Mondays and Fridays, which last one hour and 20 minutes, respectively).
There is dedicated time in each call for sharing good news and celebrating it as a team. It’s 2 minutes every day, which might not seem like much, but it adds up to 40-50 minutes per month, which is 40-50 minutes more than we would’ve spent otherwise. That’s not insignificant, and it’s a great way to start the day on a positive note.
Celebrating—and doing it very regularly—is a massively important part of your team’s culture. As a startup, you go through a lot together, even if you’re not in the same room. Being able to commemorate those wins when they happen helps to keep morale high and the whole team motivated to fight on.
As I mentioned, it’s really important to meet in person on a regular basis to celebrate the big wins (and for lots of other reasons). But that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate remotely, too.
I’m curious, too, how others approach this challenge. Let us know in the comments!