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Assign roles, detailing responsibilities and personal work objectives with team members


This page is designed to answer the following questions:

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As a leader, it is essential that you know and understand your team members and what motivates them. We’ve previously looked at some theories that can help with this including Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence.


By taking a genuine interest in your team members, including their individual skill sets, personal and professional interests, knowledge, expertise and development needs, you will be able to effectively assign roles, responsibilities, and work objectives to them.

Some team members may need more motivation than others, such as in the following situations.


Those who are not assigned their first choice of role


If a team member is assigned a role that was not their first choice, they may have reservations about carrying out the work. They may feel that they lack skills or do not feel confident about their performance. Or, they may feel that the role is not the best utilisation of their skills.

It is important for the leader to discuss these issues with the team member to try to work out a solution. It could be that require additional training or could be assigned a mentor to support them. Or it may be that they require words of encouragement to give them a confidence boost. If there is a lot of resistance, it may be worth reconsidering if the role is suitable for them.


Those who might disengage from the process or demonstrate complacency

If a team member seems disengaged from the process of carrying out their assigned role and responsibilities, again it is important to communicate with them to discover the root cause.


It may be that they have issues in their personal life that are affecting their work or perhaps they no longer feel challenged. It is important to have a discussion to identify what can be done to help them get back on track. For example, they may need time off work or a change of role to rejuvenate them.

Regular supervision can help to identify issues like these before they escalate to the point that performance is negatively affected.


Those who might show less motivation and/or enthusiasm than others

Team members that may show less motivation or enthusiasm than others may have a lack of interest in the current project or do not feel that they are valued members of the team. This is why it is important to facilitate inclusion within the team when setting team objectives because it can help team members to feel part of the process.

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