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How to Give Effective Praise and Better Motivate Your Team

Good leadership requires motivational skills. In any team effort, the leader is charged with the duty of creating and implementing team spirit. This is not very different from being the coach of a sports team.

However, in organizations or the workplace, monotony can be the death knell of team motivation and productivity. Work that becomes repetitious and monotonous has the effect of becoming robotic. In turn, the sense of being robotic doesn’t engender motivation.

The other singular issue is what some refer to as “leadership by remote control.” This is where the team has minimal real time with their team leader. Without human interaction between leader and team, motivation is the definitive key missing from team environment.

How Smart Leaders Motivate Teams to Greater Productivity and Achievement

There are several things smart leaders do that motivates teams and inspires greater productivity and achievement. These include:

  • Observe things that motivate the team
  • Ensure their project and work resources meet their needs to accomplish the directives of the team leader
  • Provide regular one to one meetings with individual team members
  • Allow team members to share ideas about their work
  • Set goals that results in rewards or praise for individual and team accomplishments
  • Encourage teams to recognize their own levels of progress, work quality and advancement

What Makes the Team Feel Useful?

A good team leader knows how important it is to make each member of the team feel they are a significant part of the work they do. Teams should also feel they have been chosen for the team based on their individual skills and experience. This is what develops team members into purposeful and valued team members who realize a sense of genuine usefulness.

Valuing Team Members

Each team member has a unique set of valuable skills and past experience. When they are chosen for a specific project, the team leader usually bases job designations on these skills and experience.

There will always be one team member who is adaptable to sudden changes in project work just as there will always be one team member who is relied on to encourage fellow team members.

The team leader should recognize these factors and provide members on the team who show outstanding progress with rewards like plaques. If there are multiple teams who deserve recognition, a team plaque helps motivate other teams within the project.

Benefits of Rewarding Your Teams

If you are team leader to several teams, your job of leadership involves constant vigilance over your teams’ progress. Depending on whether teams are working toward the same project goals or each team plays a different role in the same project, there is always the need for motivation.

In many organizations and companies, the benefit of rewarding highly motivated teams is a reduction in team member turnover. Another benefit is the sense of accomplishment that is enjoyed by leader and team for a job well done.

How to Deliver Motivational and Effective Team Praise

There is a very clear path to delivering motivational and effective team praise. It is founded upon attention to detail with regard to actual work each team member is performing.

Avoid using generic motivational statements that often sound negative. For example, “I see you have completed only half of the financial report.” Instead, “It appears your financial report is nearly complete.” In this way, the proverbial glass is half full, rather than half empty.

This is the same strategy for using effective team praise. Be specific about what the praise is for. Such as stating, “Your graphic artwork on page nine is very good.” Rather than saying, “Your work on page nine is okay.”

When to Use Plaques for Team Rewards

There are many way to use plagues to reward teams. Plagues can be presented at awards dinners or other outings that celebrate timely, efficient completion of a team project. This is also a good way to reward teams for bringing their projects in under specified budget.

It’s a good idea to announce the presentation of plaques as awards before the start of a project. This is a good way to motivate team members and gives them a goal to work toward as a team and as individual team members.

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