Motivate Your Marketing Project Team with These 3 Steps

Project management is challenging, with multiple moving parts, enterprise expectations, different personalities and other challenges. Here are seven pathways within three steps to a more motivated project team.

Project management is challenging, with multiple moving parts, enterprise expectations, different personalities and other challenges. Here are seven pathways within three steps to a more motivated project team.

Step 1

The first project step requires that you set goals, objectives, milestones and workflow expectations that will be aligned with the team you select to carry out activities.

Assemble the Best Team

Motivating your marketing project team starts with selecting the most suitable participants. Though it may seem logical to choose each member based on their work history, there are other factors which can impact how motivated each person will be throughout the project’s life.

Consider these factors when you’re assembling a project team:

  • Current Workload – A team member will be more responsive if a new project fits into her workload without significant disruption. The stress of trying to complete tasks for the new project while managing existing activities can lead a team member to be less enthusiastic about the project.
  • Social Integration – Look at how well a person fits into the team being assembled. Has he worked with the other team members before? Can he be counted on to complete assignments on time, so others can complete their tasks on time? Will he participate in group meetings?
  • Career Motivations – Workers who aspire to be an active part of the company (and the team) are more likely to be motivated to complete their assignments efficiently and effectively.

Establish Clear Goals and Objectives

Team members will be looking to the project manager to set the outcome, pace and procedures for the project. Your goals and objectives should be clearly expressed to your team, allowing for input from team members. Though goals and objectives may need to be fluid in some cases, the firmer your vision for the project, the more motivated your team will be to accomplish them. While you are covering goals and objectives, make sure to discuss the benefits for the team and the enterprise of completing the project on time and on budget. This way, the team will have a clear understanding how successful completion of the project will impact team members.

Align Workflow

The tasks assigned to your project group should be aligned not only to expedite workflow but to integrate team members as closely as possible. By aligning workflow, team members will operate more smoothly and be more enthusiastic about completing the project together.

  • Roles – Align roles to support task integration
  • Activities – Ensure that independent tasks are aligned with milestones that move the project forward
  • Ticketing – Use a ticketing system that recognizes (and communicates) dependencies so all team members are aware of issues and/or roadblocks and can adapt their workflows to accommodate disruptions
  • Issue Resolution – Manage issues and roadblocks so workflow remains continuous

Step 2

Step 2 involves management throughout the project lifecycle. As part of that management paradigm, there are three critical areas which affect team motivation.

Use Positive Feedback

Although some PMs feel that criticizing team members (or the team as a whole) maintains project control, the fact is that positive feedback is a primary motivator for most employees. When issues arise, use the following approach:

  • Begin with a positive comment
  • Follow up by addressing of the issue
  • Reinforce with a positive conclusion

Empower Your Team

Teams that feel empowered tend to perform the best. Allow your team some flexibility in how tasks are accomplished, and provide forums where team members can contribute to project development. Team members will be closest to the tasks necessary to complete the project; therefore, they will be equipped to provide assistance in shaping the direction and specifications for the project.

Step 3

Step 3 arrives as the project nears completion. At this point, it is important to review progress, anticipate final roadblocks and let the team know the end is near.

Review and Update

Hold project reviews more frequently as the completion gets closer. These reviews provide opportunities to "coach" your team to the finish line. Provide updates each time a milestone is completed and celebrate the accomplishment.

Provide Rewards

Although there have been many studies indicating that money is not a primary motivator, team members enjoy being recognized for accomplishing objectives and hitting goals. Spend a few moments acknowledging certain achievements to the group. This will keep your team motivated to reach the end of the project.

Finally, conduct a project review with the entire team when the project is completed. Sharing accomplishments, issue resolutions, changes to milestones and other information can keep team members motivated into the next project.