Blog Post 3 — Motivation and Morale of Teams

Last week I talked about how project management is a lot like running a military campaign.  Well, as any defeated (or victorious) arm-chair war-fighter can tell you, morale is one of the most important elements in determining tactical success.  The same principle applies to business leadership in R&D.

A strong (and sustainable) team and firm virtually require a strategic award system for employees that address these four areas:

Compensation, Benefits, Recognition, and Appreciation

Your award system must recognize two types of employee activity– performance and behavior.  Are you compensating a high-performing employee for time or innovation?

These can be measured at nearly all levels of Project Management by applying the Motivation Triangle:

What this means and how you can motivate your teammates and employees:

    • Invite feedback from day one
    • Have informal review sessions
    • Establish individual and team goals
  • Identify what activities are important to your company
    • Enhancing customer relationships
    • Fine-tuning critical processes
    • Helping employees expand their managerial skills
  • Genuine interest in the employee’s future career and work-life balance
  • Increase compensation and manage by milestones
  • Use cloud-based PM software
  • Have clear expectations to build your project discipline methodology
  • Make it clear who is responsible for tasks and what is expected of them.
  • Don’t use the sink or swim method for work assignments
  • Don’t let poor performers slip through the cracks without comment (inverse is especially true for high performers!)
  • Don’t reward your best team-performers by dumping all of the work on their backs.
  • Avoid superficial project management solutions.
  • Policies and practices must be prescribed first before team members are taught their responsibilities.
  • Sending people to training because they don’t know what they’re good for is a sign of bad management.
  • One awesome benefit for consistent excellence in performance and behavior (particularly of the innovative kind!) is longer-term rewards including offers equity ownership.  Align individual economic interests with company performance!!!
  • If your firm or office has trouble offering a competitive benefits package, consider turning to professional employer organizations like Administaff to gain access to a broader array of company benefits. Do not diminish the low-cost/high-return benefits of employee recognition and appreciation

Avrahami, H.  (2012, July 19).  “Project Managers:  5 Ways to Motivate Your Teams.”  Clarizen.

“Best Ways to Reward Employees.”  Entrepreneur.

Chapman, J.  (2001).  “Motivating the Project Team.”  Principle Based Project Management.

Lipman, V.  (2013, March 18).  “5 Easy Ways to Motivate – and Demotivate Employees.”  Forbes | Leadership.

2 thoughts on “Blog Post 3 — Motivation and Morale of Teams”

  1. AS
    Good post; continuing good use of source citations. Try hyperlinking within your texts.


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