- Set realistic goals
- Measure performance
- Celebrate success
- Know your team
Getting everybody amped up for the start of a new project is great, but with that must also come agreement among the team members about the workload. Nobody likes to suddenly get stuck with work on the timeline that was not previously agreed upon. That is why it is important to set realistic goals, so that nobody feels blind-sided or has to endure the stress of an impractical workload.
Knowing how projects are staying on track or why they have gone off track is also necessary. Being able to provide extra support or training to a team member who is not quite up to the task given will go a long way both toward sticking to the timeline and keeping morale high.
Celebrating success is meanwhile a topic that Whit is especially excited to discuss:
This is a big one. Celebrate successes not just at the end of the project, but all along the way, even small milestones. Acknowledge that, “Hey, we met that!” Be excited about it and look forward to the next one. Reward the team for achieving success and more importantly, for working together as a team, so the focus is not on one hero. We can do that with simple measures. Me, I like pizza and chocolates, Starbucks cards or funny Dollar Store knick-knacks that say thank you.
And while knowing your team may sound like an obvious way to motivate them, Whit actually grants quite a bit of insight into why this is truly needed. Knowing who on your team is or is not detail-oriented will be vital when dealing with a detailed task. Knowing how to match skill sets with the appropriate job is key. Even knowing whether a person is outgoing or shy will help when deciding how best to celebrate their individual successes. The better you know your team, the better you can make them happy, and the happier they will make you by getting work done on time, with or without foreign sports cars.