The Art of Managing Staff Morale
Management puts you in charge of more than just finishing the job you are charged with. It requires you to keep a team focused and on task. Therefore the team’s morale falls on your shoulders.
Staff morale is incredibly important to making sure your projects and tasks are completed on time. A drop in morale leads to reduced productivity, increased absenteeism, and could create conflicts among your team.
Therefore, maintaining staff morale is paramount to your project management objectives. So what can you do to keep your team on task and morale high? These tips should help learn the art of managing staff morale.
Staff Morale Starts with the Manager
The first place to begin when trying to keep up morale is with you. Your management efforts are doomed to fail if your morale is poor. If you find yourself lacking enthusiasm about the job, ask yourself why. Once you understand why your morale is poor, you can take steps to resolve it. Furthermore if your team are having issues, this introspection could serve to bring insight to the problem. If an issue is sinking your morale, it is almost a certainty that it is creating trouble for other team members as well.
Occasionally your morale is high but your team is suffering, and it is actually your fault. Part of the introspection is examining your management style and asking yourself if what you are doing is helping your team to succeed.
Start using a team dashboard to keep everyone updated of the latest company improvements and make teamwork more transparent.
Earn the Trust of Your Team
If staff morale is down you will never learn the reason unless you can attain the trust of your team. Maintain an open door policy and keep an open mind when team members come to you with problems. Learn how to talk and even laugh with your team. If others begin to see you as a fellow coworker instead of just “management”, they will open up to you. Trust is an important part of management regardless. You not only need to know about staff morale issues, but you will also need everybody to tell you if there are problems with the project.
Managing Staff Feedback – Especially Regarding Successes
Every manager quickly learns the value of feedback. People need to know if they are performing badly, and importantly want to know when they are achieving success. If you adopt a policy of “no news is good news”, then staff morale will quickly suffer. Praise accomplishments,and show your team that you are paying attention and appreciate their hard work. This will boost morale and ensure that your team objectives are met.
To make everyone’s work easier, start using a scheduling tool that saves you hours of time otherwise spent on emailing other participants.
Maximize Worker Autonomy
In a perfect world management would be as simple as coming up with a task list and walking away. While we do not live in a perfect world, you still must resist the urge to micromanage. Remember that your team consists of experts in their respective fields, and they probably know more than you do about how to accomplish their objectives. Do not separate yourself from your team entirely, but maintain a hands-off approach. Walk around and get regular status reports, but unless there is a glaring problem trust in your team to do what they need to do.
Establish Clear Goals
Remember what we said before about rewarding success? An important facet of this is being able to measure success and having a clear goal. If every member of your team knows what they are supposed to be doing, your project is more likely to be successful. An aspect of management involves breaking complex tasks down into simpler elements. Breaking these elements down into tangible goals allows employees to measure their progress against an objective measure for when you find yourself unable to deliver personal feedback.
To keep track of your goals, you need to collect business data. Read why you need an Excel alternative for that.
These were just a few ideas on how managing staff morale. Your business and project plans will have a greater chance of succeeding if you can adopt these strategies.