As anyone in a management position knows, it can sometimes be difficult to get the team up and moving. In today's fast paced environment, most everyone is under stress, both at work and at home.
When a project deadline is looming and your team is buckling under the stress, it is your job to keep them motivated and on track. By taking the time, and having the foresight to plan ahead, you can keep the stress to a minimum, the project on track, and make your employees feel that they are a highly valued part of the team in the process.
We all know that when someone feels appreciated, they tend to be much happier in general. If you take that thought process and bring it into the office, the results could be greater than you ever imagined. As we all know, an employee that feels appreciated is a more productive employee.
How much would your team members appreciate something as small as a fruit basket that is always stocked in the office? What about a small refrigerator that is stocked with water or sodas. Not only will these things boost team morale, they will also decrease the time that your team members spend away from their desk in search of refreshments in the employee break room or via an outside snack vendor.
These are things that are inexpensive and easy to implement. They can be done quickly while you work on other ways to let your employees know that you appreciate their efforts.
And believe me, I've been to a project where exactly this was done. A simple basket of fruits every morning for the whole team of 35 people. Costs were not noticable compared to the overall costs of the project.
When employees are asked what the biggest benefit of their job is, those that have it available, report that they most appreciate the ability to work a flexible schedule. They report that it makes them feel that they are more able to meet the needs of their family as well as be a productive employee.
While this may not be something that you are able to implement immediately, it is something that can be a major benefit in keeping your team happy for the long run.
And again – I've been to a company where extactly that was done. All that was required was a working team communication – no corporate time keeper or strange rules applied – only me, the project manager had to be able to keep in touch with the team members… and as long as I was ok with their schedule, everybody else was.
But that's something you have to fight for outside the scope your project – and even if you are responsible for your projects reasults, you may find it hard sometimes to influence it by 100% if you have to fight for hours for such external factors…
but believe me – it pays off!