Maintaining productivity in any team is difficult, but even more so within a marketing team where there are smaller teams within, yet everyone still needs to be aligned. And with the recent pandemic and people dispersed across different locations, this has become increasingly more difficult.
However, there are some ways that you can boost your team’s productivity and ensure that it’s running like a well-oiled machine.
One of the best ways to boost your team’s productivity is to make individual team members accountable for their own actions. In general, when a mistake happens, the first person to blame is the manager of a marketing team. However, by giving more people accountability, you give them ownership of their work and tasks, increasing their motivation to perform well.
But once you give team members ownership of their work, you have to remember to stay out of it as much as possible. Micromanagement is not a healthy business practice, and it disengages people from the task at hand. In the end, they will do a much better job on their own, without you pulling the strings. Giving some basic direction and having a meeting at pre-set checkpoints will be much more valuable. You’ll see if the team member is going in the right direction, and they will get advice if they need it.
Set Clear Goals
Instead of micromanaging your employees, you should create a strategy based on the goals you want to achieve. Strategizing seems like a logical thing to do, yet only 38% of marketers have a documented content marketing strategy. When people don’t understand their part of the whole or how their work fits the bigger picture, it creates misalignment in the team (and stresses out individuals).
Once you create a strategy — be transparent about it. This way, your team will know what is expected of them and why. Simultaneously, you should provide clear direction, especially if a team member is working on something outside of their comfort zone. Knowing the goal they will achieve if they complete a task successfully, your team members will be better positioned to take ownership of the task and perform much better.
Constructive feedback is crucial for team productivity. Once you give out tasks and explain why they are important, you also have to remember to share your opinion on the results. Did the employee do a good job? Could they have done something to make it a bit better? If so, what?
Remember to highlight all the good things they’ve done. But also show them everything that they could have done better or areas where they have to improve. Make this a discussion rather than a lecture. All of this will encourage your team members to enhance further and grow and give them the motivation to do so.
Stave Off Burnout
Burnout is a looming danger in a modern business environment. People are more connected than ever, and it seems as if the work never stops. But we also often stick to some old-fashioned methods of working that hold us back. For example, the history of automation has taught us that it can quickly and efficiently replace menial, repetitive tasks that add no value to a project. These are the tasks that also create burnout — they are not creative or interesting at all. Automation could fix that.
Another thing that can help is creating a time in the day when your team members can disconnect from their communication channels and just focus on deep work. You can also avoid communication after-hours unless necessary. Some companies offer a few hours a day when their employees can just relax — read a book, meditate, go to the gym or do anything that makes them feel good.
The Bottom Line
Managing a team — especially a team in such a multifaceted area as marketing — isn’t easy. However, by applying good business practices, you can help your team become more motivated, efficient, and productive.
Each step in this guide has a learning curve — doesn’t everything? — but it will actually help you adjust these strategies to your team and their specific needs. Perhaps they will prefer and respond more to one strategy over the other. It’s up to you to observe and analyze the results so you can further improve your techniques and build up your team’s productivity.