When you are a project manager PM certification will teach you that when leading a team; soft skills are just as important as hard skills and this is because working with a mix of personalities can be challenging and rewarding in equal measure. The true test of people skills, however, is when you need to keep your staff motivated; especially when a project begins to lose momentum.
You can have hired the most enthusiastic people in the land but as time goes by even the best team members can begin to run out of fresh ideas and energy. So how do you “pep” them up to ensure they are bouncing through the office door again to help you fight the good fight and lead each and every project to successful completion?
The good news is that you don’t have to show them the door. A “new broom” is not the solution because after all; you did originally see that spark in them. All you need to do is to re-ignite their fire for the job and you can do this by thinking out the box with the positive psychology taught on project managers courses.
Here are a few of the best tips to help you do just that:
Praise And A Raise
There are still too many PM’s out there who consider it “weak” to give credit where credits due but lack of recognition will only lower your team’s confidence, self-esteem and motivation. “Spot bonuses” is one of the newer buzz words but it simply refers to giving some kind of reward to show your appreciation for an employee’s hard work.
Uniforms can seem passé but research shows that “team wear” still unites people; providing a consistent visual clue that they are all working towards the same goal. Suits may not “suit” your company but business apparel has moved with the times and employees won’t have a problem with a fashionable yet professional set of togs even if it’s just a branded cap. Even better could be a “tongue in cheek” baseball shirt that will invoke team spirit and boost motivation to win (as well as raising a few laughs!)
Playing To Win
“Gameification” is where you literally inject fun play into the harder tasks that would benefit from a sweetener up in order to keep employees charging ahead. There is nothing wrong with healthy competition; especially where prizes are involved!
Celebrate Team Wins
The expression ‘work hard, play hard’ is an apt one for boosting motivation and keeping team mates united and a celebration can be tailored to suit all personalities whether it’s a raucous party or afternoon tea!
Nothing will de-motivate people than thinking they could be stuck in a dead-end job. The above tips will help your team realise this is not the case but offering a clear way up the career ladder is the best motivation incentive of all.
Hopefully these tips will help you motivate a flagging team and keep them engaged throughout the course of your project.