As a store manager, I know how important it is to manage team morale. If your team has a low morale then your project will suffer and things don’t get done on time. When we are managing a project how do we ensure that things get done on time and our employees are being effective in their work? It is important to consider morale at the beginning when you are planning a project so that you can manage expectations early. When your team isn’t getting the moral support needed it can impact productivity, time, cost, and the quality of the work. These are all things that will set you back in your project.
So, what causes low morale? If your teams aren’t built on trust then you can expect morale to suffer. If your team only thinks that you are recognizing their work to try to “get more out of them” then they will distance themselves emotionally from you and not be as motivated to go that extra mile. It is important to build strong trust-based relationships with your team so that they can see your true intentions.
On the same note, it is important to celebrate accomplishments with your teams. When you are celebrating success with your team you are looking at the bigger picture. Your team will feel appreciated and it shows them that you know they are working hard. Recognizing success can be something big like a party or it can be small, like taking five extra minutes in your day to tell your team how well they are doing. When your team sees that you recognize the importance of their work and their role, it shows that you respect them and this is also where trust is built.
If you want to improve the productivity of your team then it is important that you take ownership over how you manage your relationships with each of them. Trust doesn’t come over night and you will have to work to ensure that your team feels the level of respect and appreciation needed in order for them to be successful. Improving morale is a continuous process but as the project manager and team leader, it’s your job to make sure it is getting managed. My best advice? Have fun with it and have fun with your team.