Does your team seem lethargic? Is there a noticeable lack of enthusiasm among the members? Do you suspect that the team is worn out and frustrated by the process? Have you noticed that they are not as careful with their work?
If any of that sounds like what is happening with your team, the problem could be low morale. Low morale can be serious; it means that your team members are not happy with their job. They may be feeling that way because of a difficult client, pressure from the higher ups or any number of other reasons.
The cause is not really important. What is important is that as the manager, you act to correct the situation. You can’t solve every problem that the team is facing. However, you can create an environment that helps to encourage cooperation and productivity. Use the following tips to help you get started.
Compliment Your Team Members
You are busy. You have a lot on your plate, and it is easy to allow one day to quickly slip into the next, without sitting up and really seeing what is going on around you. However, it is important to bring attention to what your team members are doing right. Giving a compliment doesn’t cost any money and it doesn’t take a lot of time. But, it can make a huge difference when it comes to the morale of your team.
Make sure, though, that you only give credit where credit is due. You will not help the situation if you praise everyone and everything for no reason at all. Make note of exception work ethic or impressive performance. Your team members will strive to get recognition from you if you handle the situation the right way.
Don’t just compliment your team members in private, either. Make sure to speak up when you are all in a group or when a superior is present. This will help ensure that your team members know they are an important part of the company.
As a good manager, you likely know how important it is to set goals. However, while long-term goals can help to keep your team focused, it is hard to relate to them day in and day out.
Instead, sit down with your team and come up with some short-term goals. They don’t necessarily have to be work related, although they can be. It is also okay to make up silly goals to keep your team laughing and relating to one another. Don’t forget to give a reward when a goal is met! The entire team will look forward to achieving goals as a result. See here for advice.
Deal With Problems
Even if you do everything right (which is very hard to do), low morale could still crop up among your team members. This is not unusual and is to be expected. However, don’t just sit back and hope that things get better. Instead, talk about what is going on and brainstorm solutions. Ask team members why they are frustrated and what you could do to help improve the situation. It is not always easy to talk about things like this, but once you get started, you’ll find that you can learn a lot about how to change the culture of the workplace.
It helps if your team can relate to you. Tell them about a situation that made you feel overwhelmed. Explain that you want to bring up team morale and ask for suggestions on how to make things better. If your team is an active part of the process, they may respond better to your ideas. Here are some good tips on dealing with these sorts of issues.
Morale takes a sharp nose dive when team members feel stuck at work, to the point that they are unable to do the things they need to do for their family or friends. As a manager, you should be aware of this; make sure your team members have the tools they need to succeed in the office, but also make sure they are able to work toward personal goals as well.
Communication is important here. Discuss the schedule with your team. Find out what they have going on at home. Figure out how to work the schedule around their needs. For example, if you know that a team member’s child has soccer games on Thursday nights, schedule a late night for Wednesday instead. You won’t be able to accommodate everyone all the time. However, if you do your best, your team members will appreciate you for it and morale should improve as a result.
Recognize Other Talents
Your team is made up of a group of people that all have something unique to offer to the company. You may not always know what these skills are, but if you are able to tap into the resources that your team brings to the table, you are much more likely to find success (and they will be happier).
Once a month, have a team member talk about a skill they have with the team. The skill could be anything; what is most important is that you get the group sharing with one another. Doing so helps people to relax and relate to one another.
Teams can be built and morale improved through activities in the workplace. This is the best possible way to get people to work together. There are all kinds of team building activities for work and what you choose depends on your company. However, they are well worth looking into.
Make sure you have an information sheet on each of your team members that lists their favorite things. If you see that someone is struggling, surprise them with a little something from their list of favorites. You can also do this for their birthday or just because. This is a great way to improve morale. Here are some good tips.
The above should help entice better morale and a better team in the workplace