When you have a new marketing team, the team begins with a high energy level and members are excited about the challenge being given to them. Generally speaking, after the first year, the team can experience a slump that could stall progress on the team’s marketing initiative or put an end to its future achievements. I guess after the freshness of being a part of a team has worn off, team members begin to raise the inescapable what’s-in-it-for me question. In the beginning, the chance to have more input in decisions might be adequate to keep the marketing team motivated. As the team moves further along acknowledgement of individual and group contribution might be sufficient to keep member interest high. But as a team’s efforts begin to show an impact on the bottom line, and then more is needed to encourage the team to continue at a high performance level.
There are other ways you can reaffirm the value of the marketing team and rejuvenate team spirit. Here are five-key ways to help teams that are experiencing burnout are:
- Inspire innovation from the team. Giving team members the opportunity to take reasonable risks can restart team member interest in the project. Identifying and improving on work processes might be just what a team needs for new energy. Those who come up with good ideas should also be acknowledged and rewarded for their contributions, because this will reinforce creativity in others.
- Propose a new perception on the situation. One way to do this is to arrange a field trip to a customer’s or a supplier’s facility. Not only will the visit offer new ideas, but the high level of treatment that the customer or supplier is likely to give the team participants will also make the trip a motivating experience.
- Raise the bar and present new challenges. Expand the scope of the project or change the team’s objectives so its goal becomes more challenging to members. For example, tie the new initiative to a corporate strategic goal or add some new tasks to the team’s repertoire after appropriate training. Whatever the new task, there will be elements that team members will have to learn. As long as the training is provided in stages and the new responsibility isn’t overwhelming, team members should feel more valued.
- Reconsider the ground rules. A new challenge might justify reexamining the team’s operating ground rules that were set when the team was formed. The group might find that it has been violating its own operating procedures or maybe it neglected to incorporate some necessary goals when the team was formed. By studying the ground rules, the team might identify opportunities to improve the quality of its meetings.
- Encourage internal stakeholders to join the team. New members can bring fresh perspectives to the group and generate renewed enthusiasm for the project. Listening to other teams’ war stories can also kickstart a burned-out team. Inviting visitors who have an investment in the team’s project to the team’s meeting will remind members of the importance of the team’s mission.