How can you motivate your team during difficult projects? | SupportBiz

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How can you motivate your team during difficult projects?

You have, finally, laid your hands on that big project you had always dreamed of getting. This project will take your business to the next level, offer you tremendous experience and exposure and, of course, big bucks. However, this project is fast turning out to be the project from hell and is leaving your employees stressed out. How would you handle this?

SupportBiz lists six effective tips for you to keep your team motivated during such difficult projects.

  1. Recognise and celebrate small milestones.

A difficult project can soon begin to feel like endless drudgery to your team, with no immediate breakthroughs being spotted. Try to avoid this situation as far as possible. Set small, realistic goals for your team, and small timeframes to achieve them. Make sure that you recognise each such small goal realised, and celebrate as many such milestones as possible. The celebrations need not be elaborate; they can be as simple as sending out an e-mail to and appreciating your team members, ordering in lunch/dinner or going for a team outing.

  1. Get your hands dirty.

Nothing demotivates a team faster than a leader who is not willing to support them in their times of need. During difficult projects, you should be ready to get down and help your team wherever required. Make sure that your team knows that you are there to back it up whenever the need arises, and that your team members can approach you at any time without hesitation or fear.

  1. Provide your team with what it needs.

Provide your team with whatever it needs for the fast expedition of the project. This could be anything – guidance, ideas, help with some information or technology, or helping a team member seek help from another colleague outside the team.

  1. Plan well.

Spend time and effort in chalking out a realistic plan for the execution of the project. Set up clear goals and timelines within which they should be achieved. Clearly specify which person in the team will be responsible for what. Put all of this in writing. Hold periodic meetings with your team, and keep track of the progress on the project. Have back-up plans ready, in case some aspect of the project goes wrong. This kind of planning will help you avoid delays in the expedition of the project, keeping your team members motivated and free from stress.

  1. Clarify the big picture.

Make sure that each team member knows what benefits the project will offer, both to the business and to him/her personally. Better recognition and revenues for the business? Better exposure and an improvement in job skills for the team members? Better designations and salaries or a bonus for your staff? Once your team members know the positive effects that the completion of the project will have on their jobs and the firm, they are more likely to be motivated.

  1. Help them look forward to the completion of the project.

Set up an expected end date for the project, and communicate the same to your team. Help your team look forward to the completion of the project, by offering them incentives - like a party, a team outing or a leave – to celebrate the big milestone. This will help your team members stay motivated and invested in the project.


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