How to boost developers motivation?

 In Self-Development, Team Stories
T

echnology has definitely changed the way we do most of our daily tasks at work, and even in our personal life. There is a vast and diverse set of communication and management tools available that make our work a bit easier. At least that is the goal.

BUT, choosing the right set of tools and the ideal way of using them is a real challenge.

In Singular, we have available round 100 tools and applications that aim to make not only the development but the planning and communication processes more efficient and reliable.

My last blog post “The hidden gems of JIRA, Confluence, and Slack”, highlighted the tools we use most frequently together with recommendations on how to avoid overwhelming your people.

Today, I will talk about the other side of the coin… The good old-fashioned face-to-face knowledge sharing and why it is essential for your team.

People working on complex products can’t see the forest for the trees

Agile development methodologies aim to subtract the complexities from the project and plan short development cycles. Developers focus on the priorities from the backlog for the current Sprint.

While this empowers more focused, dedicated work and efficient allocation of resources, people tackling only a segment of the project may fail to see how all parts fit the puzzle.

The product owner who is continuously involved in the planning has a very clear product-vision, but the rest of the team who is clearing the Kanban board one issue at a time can easily lose sight of the big picture.

If you notice your people are lacking motivation, are easily agitated and impatient, call for a gathering. NOT a meeting, a gathering. Call it a celebration.

A celebration for all the hard work and all the small wins. A celebration for the reached milestone and the baby steps taken in the right direction.

One of our teams has had a truly intense couple of months. They decided to stop, take a step back and highlight all the things they have achieved during this hard-working period.

Last Friday we had one such gathering, that happened rather spontaneously and turned into a company-wide knowledge sharing session. 

sportsbook team

Several team members took the stand and shared their perspective. Slowly but surely all parts came together. Suddenly the big picture was easy to grasp.

Teams with shared vision have higher levels of commitment

Last Friday gathering started with sharing product updates and reached milestones but ended up with conversations about the final vision of the product at hand.

The talk later highlighted the impact of each achieved milestones on the end goal and how it takes us a step closer to the grand finale. Brought each member, and each team on the same page.

Why this is important?

Shared vision leads to shared responsibility.

Teammates who share the same vision are more likely to help each other, tend to share knowledge in both formal and informal settings and are willing to pick up an extra skill that will contribute to both their individual and team’s higher performance.

More importantly, companies with shared vision across teams have higher motivation and retention rates. They also score high on employee satisfaction surveys.

But inspiring shared vision is challenging. And it is not a one time thing. You don’t just create shared vision, you continuously develop it, nurture it and grow it.

That is why you have to celebrate the small wins, the milestones, the baby steps. That gives people not only the sense of achievement, but also enhances their commitment to the team and to the organization.

I don’t know if it was the low oxygen levels because people kept popping-in the meeting room, but the presentation ended with an exhilarating high.

And of course there was pizza. Totally deserved it 🤩

teamwork

Bottom line, successful work is more than a bunch of smart people brought together. It is more than having the best tools and applications. There is a soft side that we must address. Take the time to talk and share our knowledge, achievements, challenges and doubts.

That makes the bunch of smart people a team.

If you found some common sense in this blog post subscribe to Singular Blog for more similar stories. We particularly tackle challenges that concern teamwork, particularly in software companies. At Singular, we tend to share our experience and aim to draw a lesson from each situation.

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