Every project consists of team members. The members are emotional and full of personal characteristics. In order to motivate the team, here are some suggestions.
1. Involve them.
Many team members want to be involved in the ongoing development and progress of their project team. Plus, they often have insightful ideas that can make a significant difference in the project. Involve them, seek their opinion, comments. Team members are running the activities, they may know some efficient ways to run the project better in their knowledge domain. Remember to involve them in good times and in bad times. Do not only involve them to get more project tasks, and start to finger point at them when issue arises.
“No news is good news.” Project team and stakeholders want regular updates on the progress of the business and their project performance. Use memos, email, telephone, one-on-one discussion and group meetings to keep your team apprised of changes, updates, new products, etc. It is better to over communicate rather than under communicate. At most the member can delete additional information but they cannot get information when it was not communicated to the team members. However, do not over-load the team members. Have a balance of the communication.
3. Celebrate individual and team performance.
Catch people doing something right and focus on recognizing excellent performance. Provide positive reinforcement, issue awards, use a corporate newsletter to highlight specific achievements. Send thank-you cards and congratulatory notes, make phone calls, and send emails.
4. Set challenging goals. My experience has taught me that people strive to achieve what is expected of them. If you set challenging goals your team will work hard to accomplish them, providing of course, they are realistically attainable.
5. Give them the tools to succeed.
No team will stay motivated if they do not have the necessary tools required to do their job. This includes; equipment, internal support, inventory, marketing materials, training, etc.
6. Manage poor performance. Your team expects you to manage individuals who do not perform to standard. However, many managers ignore these situations because they are afraid to deal with them, hoping instead that the situation will resolve itself. It never does and this “blind” approach affects profitability, causes higher turnover, and generates low morale.
7. Believe in your people. The majority of people want to do well – very few individuals approach a job with the intent of screwing up. Yet, many managers run their business thinking that employees must be treated with a “watchdog” mentality. They install hidden cameras, monitor email, and set up procedures that require employees to get multiple approval signatures for decisions.