How can project managers motivate project teams?

Essay by caved357University, Bachelor'sA+, July 2003

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Motivation is defined as the willingness to do something conditioned upon the action's ability to satisfy some need for the individual. (Robbins & De Cenzo, 2001) Motivation is the key to getting the job done because without it, projects and jobs are completed with no purpose or direction. There are many methods that Project Managers can use to motivate teams.

A key to methodical motivation is flexibility. Studies show that men place a considerable amount of importance in having autonomy in their jobs whereas women place importance in having the opportunity to learn, having convenient work hours, and having good interpersonal relationships at the workplace. (Robbins & DeCenzo, 2001) In order to successfully motivate a team, Project Managers must take into consideration the members on their teams and what it will take to motivate each of them to work together. The flexibility comes into play because each member of the team may have different personal needs and goals or they come from different ethnical or cultural backgrounds.

If a Project Manager is not flexible, their chance for successful motivation decreases.

Other keys to motivation, though less important, are incentives, both individual and collective. A team as well as its members has personal needs which can be satisfied through incentives. The incentive can be as simple as time off or it can be more personal like pay-for-performance or competency-based compensation. Pay-for-performance incentives compensate team members based on some measurable performance. Some examples of pay-for-performance incentives are piece rate plans, gainsharing, wage incentives, profit sharing, and lump-sum bonuses. Competency-based compensation pays and rewards teams and team members on the basis of skills, knowledge, or possessed behaviors. Some examples of the skills, knowledge, and behaviors are leadership, problem solving, decision making, or strategic planning. Compensation is based on the degree to which these...