Saturday, May 14, 2011

Credit the team on their success

Everyone wants to feel they have contributed to the success of a project, when it is finally successfully  launched, but do you ensure the credit goes to your team? One of our basic needs for all of us is to feel like we belong. When we do feel strongly tied to a successful team we are more committed to maintaining the performance.

How many times have you seen the team leader get up and make a presentation about the projects successful launch and all the hard work that that he put in to get it over the line. I bet the answer is you have seen this too many times, and you know that feeling as all the team members collectively sigh. i think we have all seen this leader at work and don't aspire to be like them.

While it is very important to keep the whole business apraised of what your team does, the better way to deliver good news is to involve the team. A great way to do this is to have your team make the presentation and talk about how as a team they came together and worked through all the issues and launched the project. The immediate feedback the team members get from management at this time of presentation is golden. They will have a first hand view of how the business sees this project and they will gain a sense of pride from the positive feedback.

This subtle difference in deliverying the message vuia the team will give your team a morale boost that you could never easily achive.

On the flip side of this, if the news is poor then it is up to you as the team leader to deliver the message and take the brunt of the feedback. Shield the team from the emotion, and deliver your own negative feedback while searching for what went wrong.

By making sure the credit for great jobs is given directly to the team, will better empower them to drive the team to more succeses.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Team Maintenance by applying motivation

We often hear about people complaining about their job and the threat to quit and go somewhere else. While some people are just prone to complaining, a percentage of people will leave your team and go and try something else, and over time some of these members will come back. Often the complaint is about money, yet time and time again when employees are surveyed money rarely comes in the top ten things that keep people where they are. The challenge for us as leaders is to use this to our advantage and apply what we can to keep our team motivate and hence  maintain our team focus.

So if money is not the major satisfaction factor within our team what is? When we look, into this we find that most people want to be a valued member of their team. Possibly this answer is a little undefined for many where an x percentage pay increase is easy to quantify - though often hard to justify.

What should we look to put into place so that each of our team members feels like they are valued for their contribution. Most often this is through a combination of simple team maintenance activities.
Do you know everyone by name? Do you know what's important to them? Do you take time to talk to them in a one-on-one sense and as the collective?

Do you have a mechanism for celebrations? Are birthdays, company goals holidays all celebrated?
Set some budget aside for a family picnic, send flowers to homes when significant events occur. Consider setting up a social club and offer to subsidize events. Sponsor a sport team.  While these may seem a little intangible, if you can incorporate this into your team, many of your members will realise that they belong and their value is recognised.

If you can find a way to incorporate these simple things into your team schedule, you'll find the team will be more motivated and coherent, giving you the best possible environment to achieve success with your team.