Why celebrating achievements is so important: even if you are self-employed

Rinkel collega Janine
Janine Wilbrink
update: 10 June 2021

This article was first shared on Bereik.io. Since 17 May 2022, we have changed our name from Bereik to Rinkel. But don't worry, it's still us: your trusted business telephony provider.

The life of an entrepreneur is not about roses. You often make plenty of mistakes that make you thoroughly miserable, but you also experience plenty of successes. And yet we often catch ourselves not doing anything with those successes.

With every mistake we make, we pause to take a lesson from it:

  • What could have been done better?
  • How do we avoid this next time?

And we go back to business as usual in good spirits. But: you never forget this mistake. This won't happen to you again.

Why do we dwell on mistakes we make, but almost never on successes we have achieved? Because this is just as important!

Want to know why that is and how to celebrate successes and milestones? Then read on. ↓

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4 reasons to start celebrating successes today

Start celebrating successes today! No matter how small they are: it is SO incredibly important. And there are no less than 4 important reasons for this:

#1: Celebrating successes creates (more) job satisfaction

Many companies tend to forget to celebrate successes. It may slip by once in a while, but it really shouldn't. Map out for yourself which milestones or moments require unpacking and stick to them.

Nothing better than putting each other in the spotlight, popping the bottles of champagne or organising an outing. As soon as something is planned, everyone looks forward to it. You catch yourself whistling to work and saying hello to everyone on the way. That's how happy it makes you.

But, it also literally makes for more job satisfaction. Your tasks are spontaneously more fun, colleagues more sociable and you complete your tasks faster too.

#2: It stimulates personal growth and it motivates

You have achieved a target, won an important new client or turned in a record turnover: these are milestones and successes that simply need to be celebrated. And that stimulates growth!

Nothing feels better than achieving your goals. The endorphins race through your body and you feel 200%. So (after celebrating, of course!) you and your team go blazing again to meet the next target, reach a new milestone and bring in an even bigger client.

You put in even more effort and learn new techniques to work better (or faster), in order to celebrate another success in no time. Procrastination is no longer an issue.

Taart met "2" erop op een bureau

#3: There is no better form of team building

As an self-employed this is of course not quite the case, but when you reach a milestone with a team, this is a very important one!

You've spent weeks, months or even years working towards that one goal. Completing the project, launching the website or finishing that villa. The final brick has been laid and the project is finished.

Celebrating successes with the team (or just the whole company!) creates a sense of togetherness and this strengthens the overall team spirit. People have fun, are relieved and keep their spirits up for the next big project.

PS: Even if you are self-employed and you have reached a milestone, you still often did not do this all by yourself. Think of your so-called 'support system': your friends, network, suppliers, your partner and (possibly) children. They have always supported and motivated you; even when times were tough.

#4: It forms the base for new successes

Did you win an important client? Then the next success is: project completion! And if they are then also super satisfied with your company and want to do business with you more often, that is of course an extra reason to do it EXTRA big! Of course, you also involve the client in this success: after all, you wouldn't have succeeded without them. ;-)

One milestone is not the same as another, but they do follow on from one another. Do you have 5,000 customers now, like Rinkel in November 2020? Then of course the next is the 7,500 or 10,000. And that one big customer? Then the next target is the market leader of that industry!

These kinds of successes are incredibly important to celebrate. Not just with the team or person who achieved it, but the whole company. Everyone belongs: successes are celebrated together.

Achievements are to be celebrated together.

- Team Rinkel

Celebrating successes: some examples

Now that you are convinced of the value of celebrating successes and dwelling on milestones, it is also high time to convince yourself of how to do this.

Celebrating a success does not immediately have to become a special affair on a Saturday night where the partner can also join in. You don't immediately need to hire a hall with a DJ, or eat at a Michelin-starred restaurant with the whole company. Although that is fun of course!

Of course you need to go all out once in a while, but it doesn't always have to be grand. Celebrating successes can be done on a much smaller scale. Just think:

  • Popping the champagne at the office. It's cosy, easy and cheap!
  • Order a stack of pizzas from the local pizza joint and enjoy! 
  • Quit work a little early and take your colleagues or your team to the terrace around the corner.
  • Organise something on a Saturday! What suits your team? A boat trip, paintballing or a city scavenger hunt?

Besides, you have plenty of opportunities to organise something in every city. Just Google 'Company event Rotterdam' or 'Company event Amsterdam' and they fly around your ears. All you have to do is choose something!

Or check out the 1001 Activities website directly for all the corporate events you can think of!

Do you work with international teams? Or is there a pandemic causing everyone to work from home? Then there are also plenty of online events. Like the online escape rooms by our client Raccoon Serious Games, which was recently in the Spotlight!

Bonus: celebrating successes á la Rinkel!

You might be wondering, what are those corks doing in that picture? But: Jeroen, our one and only Chief Motivator, explains.

"Every milestone should and would have to be celebrated Thus the idea was born: at every milestone the champagne should and would flow richly. And so it happened. 

It started with the first 100 customers: the champagne was uncorked and in the attic room in Hellevoetsluis, where everything started, there was a small but still big party. The cork was kept afterwards. With the idea of saving all the corks and turning them into a piece of art or frame. Because, the idea was, for every 100 new customers we would treat ourselves to champagne. 

But those 100 new customers came in quicker and quicker succession. To prevent Hellevoetsluis from running out of champagne, Jeroen and Jesper took a break and decided to celebrate milestones in a different way.

So, what do you do? 

You move the office from Hellevoetsluis to the heart of Rotterdam and find a regular pub. This is how Rinkel became a regular at the BreakAway. On the day of the 'celebration', we stopped working around 3-4 o'clock. Until around 8 o'clock that evening, we were no longer busy with telecom, but with beer, appetisers, pool and full of pride: because we had done it again! Another milestone for Rinkel.

When Rinkel passed the 2,000-customer mark, we decided to be a bit more exclusive and lavish. So we took the whole team to an exclusive restaurant with a Michelin star. We were the last guests and stayed until they closed the doors. 

The launch of Rinkel in America was also a big milestone. So they did not bivouac in a shabby little flat, but rather in a villa with outdoor pool and jacuzzi. Because when you pull off something like this: it's just allowed. And if you think that's all, you're wrong. Not only founders Jeroen and Jesper flew to Orlando. No, the whole team was allowed to come along! Including a trip to Disneyworld, of course.

Unfortunately, corona also threw some sparks into the celebrations at Rinkel. We reached a huge milestone: 5,000 customers. In the middle of the lockdown. So we couldn't celebrate this (lavishly).

As a surprise, we had a cartoon made of all employees and stuck it on a box of Tony's Chocolonely bars: we knew our colleagues could appreciate Tony's Chocolonely (including one in particular). After all, it was already purveyor within Rinkel of anything snack or chocolate. We had the chocolate delivered to colleagues' homes along with a Thuisbezorgd voucher! That way we were able to celebrate a little bit anyway."

I still have a few Bereik chocolate bars at home. Maybe that will become a nice collector's item one day, haha!

- Jeroen van Vierzen

This way, everyone could still celebrate the gigantic milestone of 5,000 customers. Soon we hope to celebrate it for real! Just like all upcoming milestones.