Do your team members on your project appear confused about the roles of each member in what areas of their job? Are their discussions and meetings typically end in personal accusations? Or does a member show such an “every person for themselves” attitude and avoid helping their fellow teammates? If you have answered “yes” to any of these concerns, then you’re definitely not by yourself. Sometimes, a team does not “gel.”
Each experienced project manager has faced problems in getting teams to behave as… they are, well, teams. However, with a bit of organization and guidance, you can aid your teams to achieve more and get rid of some of the obstacles and issues that make teamwork difficult. Take a look at the five strategies below to unify and organize your teams:
1. Create a Project Organization with Clearly Defined roles
The process’s management must go far beyond the chart of hierarchy. Everyone must be aware of what role they have on the team as well as how they can fit into the other roles and what happens if they fail to perform their duties.
Based on your industry or discipline of operation, depending on your functional discipline, you can use typical or customary roles on your project. Begin with the roles that are common to your particular type of project. If the specific project requires a specific job that isn’t a normal role, then design the job. If the project doesn’t require a specific standard job, then remove it. It may sound simple enough, but many project managers are reluctant to depart from the traditional roles. At the conclusion of the day, it is the outcomes that are most important and not whether the team adhered to traditional project roles.
In the event that the particular project or the project environment isn’t based on typical or standard role definitions for the project, consider an approach more realistic to the definition of roles. Choose three to six aspects in the plan that you believe are the most significant or pose the highest risk. Develop roles that include the risk areas or areas of concern. Also, ensure that the main roles are properly defined by comparing the roles to the tasks that need to be accomplished.
This kind of project management will address issues or risk areas head-on by establishing a role that has an individual point of accountability to control the aspects of your project that are the most likely to be a failure. This way, you’ll be able to sleep more peacefully, knowing that the most important areas are in place.
2. Eliminate Fingerpointing and fights in public
Each team project is likely to have lively discussions. In most cases, these discussions bring us one more step towards finalization. When they get too much and escalate to fighting and finger-pointing, be careful when allowing these debates to take place and let team members debate each other However, make sure you have a few guidelines in place to keep the level of civility.
Encourage team members to question and stretch themselves, but once the time comes to make a decision, everyone has to support the decision as a group. Whatever happens inside the room stays within the room. Outside of the room, the group remains in unison. This means that there is no talk or making a bad impression of members of the team to anyone outside. Furthermore, bad decisions should be accepted by the team. Also, there is no finger-pointing allowed. Don’t let problems turn personal. Concentrate on the problem, not on the people.
It is inevitable that some rules will be breached. But you should try to establish guidelines in place to prevent team conflict whenever it is possible.
3. Create a “Rallying Cry” to Focus the Team
You can examine any successful campaign of the past and observe the messages they carry. Take a look at the following classic instances: “Where’s the beef?” “Got milk?” and “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz.” These unifying messages could be tied to a particular product. When directing an initiative, it assists the team in adopting a unifying call or mantra.
The message you send to your team should reflect elements of the task. For instance, let’s say that your team has to be careful not to design a solution too much to cut costs. In this scenario, you may decide to use the “good enough” rallying cry in the process of design for a continuous warning not to go overboard with the idea. In addition to helping keep the project within its limits, The rallying cry can aid in bringing the team together.
4. Accountability of Team Members for the delivery
In team-based projects, each person in the team must be aware of the tasks they must complete and when they must be able to complete the task, and how their job can be integrated into the larger scheme. Everyone must be aware that the team members aren’t just dependent on the manager of their projects; they are also accountable to one another. In the end, if one individual fails, the entire team suffers. So, every team member should be aware of what everyone else is doing.
Every person in the team should be aware of what’s going on in the other roles, so they are aware of the ways they are a part of these aspects that are part of the overall project. Every role must be aware that if they don’t adhere to a deadline or do their job well and aren’t up to the task, they’re letting down the whole team, not only that of the manager. Failure to meet deadlines or to fail to deliver delivery dates are team issues and should be made known to everyone in the team. The key here is accountability. Every member must feel accountable for his/her work and must feel the satisfaction of achievement and the pain of failing.
5. Be Proud of Your Team’s Victories
The process of completing a project can be hard work, and employees are prone to get discouraged when their team is faced with obstacles or setbacks. Therefore, celebrating key milestones is essential to keep motivation high and the momentum up. Celebrations need not be expensive; they can be as easy as ordering a pizza or making cakes. Any event that allows team members to relax and take an air-out is enough. But, the excessive celebration could diminish the impact of the accomplishment and could actually cause annoyance to those in the group. Therefore, be sure to celebrate but in moderation.
Collaboration in the Future
A well-organized project team means that every member of the team is aware of their part in helping to make the project successful. Every member of the team knows the things they have for the task, the time frame they must perform their duties and what the other team members are working on the project, and what is required to succeed. Equally important, every team member assists one another to ensure project success. If you employ these strategies that unite and arrange your teams, you’ll be able to overcome the common problems of teamwork and make your next projects more successful.