The power of birthday cake: One of the unknowns in creating a strong workplace culture

Building a strong workplace culture should result in more fun and more engagement from everyone. If you’ve got the right people on your team, throwing meaningful parties is one way to grow an even stronger culture.

A strong workplace culture includes caring personal relationships between everyone in your team and extended community. Important events, big and small, happen in the lives of team members, clients, customers and suppliers every single day.

Acknowledging every victory and joining in the fun of a celebration that is important to someone else will immediately strengthen the bond you share. Parties and celebrations create shared memories and those memories can be the basis for building the strong personal relationships you need for a great culture.

For many reasons, the line “We take the time to celebrate milestones and successes” is part of The Physio Co core value of Be Memorable. One of those reasons is that I love birthdays! Even more than birthdays, I love birthday cake!

In the early days of The Physio Co, when I worked full-time as a hands-on physiotherapist in a heap of aged care facilities, I’d find a way to sing happy birthday and eat cake as often as possible. There are so many milestone birthdays happening in aged care facilities and I tried hard to never miss an 80th, 85th, 90th, 95th or my favourite, the 100th birthday!

It’s so important to acknowledge and join in the fun of a celebration that is meaningful to others. So today, guided by our Be Memorable core value and the words “We take the time to celebrate milestones and successes”, all 60-plus members of The Physio Co team make sure we get involved in having some fun and giving others a pat on the back or a proud wink as often as we can.

The Physio Co has a rhythm of parties we throw every year. Of course we have a Christmas party, we also celebrate when team members get married, have babies, achieve personal goals, win our MVP (Most Valuable Person) Awards, when The Physio Co wins awards and any other reason (big or small) that seems worth a celebration.

Next week, we will be throwing a party to celebrate The Physio Co’s ninth birthday. Parties and celebrations don’t have to be expensive, but they do need to mean something. We’re having this birthday bash in our South Melbourne support office at the end of a half day learning event for our physio team.

Yes it will be a bit squishy with 60-odd people in a small office. But, we’ll have a big cake, sing happy birthday and create more memories that are the basis of our culture.

Tristan White is a husband to Kimberley and a dad to little Alexandra. He’s a qualified physiotherapist, ironman triathlete, blogger and CEO of The Physio Co – Australia’s eighth Best Place to Work. His passion is to build a strong family and workplace culture and share what he learns with the world. Tristan’s Culture is Everything blog was ranked by SmartCompany as one of Australia’s 25 Best Business Blogs in 2011.



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