Motivated teams produce better results. That’s stating the obvious. It is also stating the obvious to acknowledge that the "ability to motivate" is a manager's job, whether the designated team is responsible for a project or day-to-day IT service operations. That said - what’s not so obvious is how it all gets done. When it comes to motivational techniques, the starting point is established by the IT management vision and the IT/End-User Partnership, both used to establish key principles of teamwork, collaboration and cooperation. Read on for more.
The first step in this "motivating" process is to ensure that, as manager, you are fully motivated to motivate others - to establish an ongoing committment to maximized team participation and engagement. It takes a sustained and strategic effort to maintain a motivated team, as can be seen from the primary "motivational" techniques listed below.
To develop the right set of steps and strategies for motivating your team, you must take the time to identify your current goals and objectives using the following questions:
Every team needs motivation, but even with performance problems, your team is still your best asset. Typically, working teams are vested with significant institutional knowledge that must be continually cultivated and leveraged. Motivation is the key to achieving that goal.
You are also an asset as a leader. Of course, you must be motivated yourself, both to motivate others and to lead by example. But you must also be realistic – considering your goals and objectives, are you capable of motivating the team, or will you need help? You also need to know what you have going for you in terms of motivational resources. On the flip side, unless you are very lucky, you will also have to deal with any number of constraints that will limit the range of potential tactics and techniques you can use to motivate others. These constraints can be organized into four (4) main categories:
Motivational strategies have to be closely aligned with the realities of your work environment, whether you are running a project or day to day operations. Any or all of the following conditions and characteristics will influence the "degree of motivational difficulty".
Once you have identified your needs, and assessed your capabilities and constraints, you have to consider the key question – what can I do to motivate my people considering “my peope”?
To motivate individuals working as a team you must balance individual recognition with group recognition, and establish a good working environment with reasonable boundaries, flexibility, consistent empowerment, open communication, positive feedback and constructive criticism. The real question is how to put it all together so that you can successfully motivate your team considering actual needs, conditions and circumstances.
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