Giving recognition and reward to project teams or individual team members is a crucial part of a project manager’s role. As the leader and mentor of the project team, you want to keep your most talented people highly motivated and encourage those who are less engaged to pick up the pace. A great way to do this is by recognising when someone has made the extra effort and giving appropriate reward for doing so.
However, giving reward is not always as easy as it seems. Put too little thought into it and those people could be left wondering why they bothered, but go too overboard and the rest of your team will have their noses put out of joint. Despite the thought and careful balancing act that needs to come into play here, reward is a serious business. Research has shown that employees who feel appreciated are twice as likely to stay with your company than those who feel unappreciated.
If you think you haven’t got the time or the resources to say thank you when it matters, just consider the costs involved with recruiting, hiring and training up a replacement team member, should someone disappear. And it might come as a surprise, but the majority of workers are not looking for a massive pay rise or financial bonus as a reward; in fact a simple, heartfelt thank you can be enough of a gesture to lift their spirits for the day.
Some ideas for rewards for your team
As discussed, your team will probably not be looking for financial reward for their efforts, so what can you do to make them feel appreciated? Here are some simple ideas for team rewards that will show you value and appreciate them.
• Flexi working arrangements: Allowing your team to start some form of flexi working can be highly appreciated by everyone. It shows a level of trust from you, and will enable team members to work their careers into their personal lives in a much more efficient manner.
• Free day vouchers: A very popular reward is a ‘free day’ voucher. The employee can use this at any time, no questions asked, and without eating into holiday days or sick time.
• Lunch out: If your budget will stretch to it, a hearty pub lunch will go a long way towards building great relations with your team. If you can afford the time, spring a surprise after the lunch by giving them the rest of the day off too.
• Lay in voucher: Just like the day off voucher, but not as costly to productivity, a lay in voucher can be used to give that employee a late start on a day of their choice.
• Upward notifications: A simple, yet effective, means of thanking a team member is to craft a nicely worded email of appreciation and not only send it to them, but send it to your boss as well, ensuring that person feels appreciated in the company as a whole, as well as within their team. This is a great way to motivate your project team members and building a motivated team will go a long way to making you a successful project manager.
The author is a certified Project Manager and believes all PM professionals should keep their skills up-to-date with the latest successful project manager. She also writes a motivate your project team Blog.
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