How does a leader motivate their team or entire organization to yearn for more by taking on challenges with the idea that all of their efforts will end up with positive results?
How does a leader keep others engaged when the initiative has many pieces and will take a long time to complete?
To start, it is imperative to assign the right people to the project.
This is a critical step in order to make sure the project will not fall apart along the way and will ultimately be successful.
This step does not include just assessing all of the possible team members’ skills but also their mindset because some people can just not stay focused and/or motivated on longer projects.
Once the appropriate team is in place, a timeline will need to be created.
The timeline will need to indicate short-term deadlines and long-term deadlines as well.
This is not just to ensure that the final project will be completed on time but also to take stock of the results so far and determine if changes need to be made along the way.
It is also a good time to evaluate if the same expertise is still needed moving forward or if different people need to be added or substituted.
Lastly there need to be short-term incentives to keep the employees on the project team motivated.
In general, people want to feel that their efforts so far are working so rewards for certain milestones will keep them on track and eager to continue.
Longer term projects also provide the opportunity for team members to learn new skills and stretch their capabilities.
With short-term projects the need for speed and accuracy is critical.
On the other hand, with a longer project, if a small mistake occurs or a need for a minor redirection comes up, it will not affect the overall project.
It may also be a good management development opportunity for a more junior person to take the lead on pieces of the project.
A wise leader will want to get his or her employees to yearn for more out of themselves as well as the organization.
It is occasionally necessary for leaders to cajole their employees, but they also need to communicate that any opportunity to provide a learning experience will be beneficial longer term – both personally as well as professionally.