Why Celebrating Small Wins Can Mean More Than Hitting Big Milestones


It’s not just the big victories that are meaningful for your drivers. It’s the little ones, too. And remembering that important fact is crucial to maximizing driver retention.
The tomatoes in your garden don’t form overnight. They start out small, build over a number of days, then ripen.

Trees don’t start out as mammoth structures. Every day, they get a little bit bigger, from sprout to branch adult tree—and beyond.

In many areas of nature, and in life, we make gradual process to get closer to a goal. While that tomato might want to ripen right now, and that sprout might want to be a tree tomorrow, that isn’t going to happen.

Does that mean we shouldn’t celebrate the little victories? Or does that mean the smaller victories—a day’s worth of growth—is somehow less important?

No way.

In just the same way, it’s important to fight for and celebrate the little wins en route toward larger milestones. In the world of trucking, they can feel few and far between.

That’s why carriers must take advantage of the progress loop to optimize progress and reduce turnover.

The Progress Loop

When we think about progress, we often imagine how incredible it feels to hit a long-term goal or experience a major breakthrough. Those are undoubtedly big, important wins, but they’re relatively rare.

The good news is, however, that even smaller wins can improve the mental state of your drivers. Ordinary, incremental progress can increase engagement at work and their happiness throughout the day.

When you feel like your work matters—that you’re contributing to your family’s well being, that you’re part of a larger team and so on—great things happen.

As Teresa Amabile and Steven J. Kramer explain in the Harvard Business Review, making progress toward meaningful goals creates better performance. Subsequently, better performance depends on consistent progress, which enhances the importance of what you do.

That’s called the Progress Loop, and, when used correctly, it reveals how important self-reinforcing habits can be.

“Business schools, business books, and managers themselves usually focus on managing organizations or people,” write Amabile and Kramer. “But if you focus on managing progress, the management of people—and even of entire organizations—becomes much more feasible.”

So what’s the best way for companies to take advantage of the Progress Loop?

Small Wins and Feedback

This Progress Loop that drives motivation after achieving small wins can only be created when employees find their work to be meaningful.

How can companies like yours do that?

You can aid in developing a strong sense of purpose by communicating about how employees’ small wins support major company objectives, showing praise and gratitude, and clearly defining goals and expectations.

Along with communicating that purpose to them, you can also give them an outlet for their concerns.

Drivers can’t win every little argument, and they can’t always get their way. But, with an anonymous feedback platform that allows drivers to speak their mind while out on the road, companies have an advantage.

Even if your driver can’t get their way, they can at least have their voice heard and their concerns acknowledged. And that’s a small win in itself.

Give your drivers the ability to feel motivated by their work and the validation they need to stay on your team with an anonymous feedback platform that moves the needle for you.

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