5 Ways to Inspire Your Marketing Team

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Existing employees hold untapped potential that can easily drive performance within your organization. The value of tapping into this potential can prove invaluable when working towards new goals. Successful analysis of understanding this potential is built on deep knowledge of your employees. The more companies can identify employee capabilities as they relate to the market and business strategy, the more they are able to continually offer improved results. Inspiring employees to think outside of the box can help reveal valuable skills that can be applied to successful strategies. In order to better understand employee capabilities, there are a series of action steps to follow.

1.)    Listen Up-Have an open conversation with your employee about their career aspirations. Ask how their current role, desired future roles, and current work environment supports their career aspirations. If there is a disconnect between their current work environment and or role, gain their perspective on how tasks or duties associated with their desired aspirations could be applied to their current role. This provides additional opportunities to motivate your employee while giving them a chance to exercise their skill-sets. The exercising of these skills can help unlock and expose skills that could potential drive results in your current body of work as a result of thinking outside of the box.

2.)    Shatter Rules-This does not mean violate policies or values. What it does mean is, remove any caps on creativity. Offer safe zones and open door policies for creativity. Champion new ideas shared by your employees by incorporating them into overall into team strategies. Infrastructure and core strategy fundamentals are necessary. However, with changing work environments, approaches to strategies must change as well.

3.)    Chop it Up-After outlining the overall team goal, vision, and expectations of each teammate, chop up the tasks within your strategy and divide them amongst the team. Allow your employees to select the tasks that best connect with them. The teammates will own tasks that they are more passionate about. This allows the teammate to offer 100% of their own creativity to the team. In this type of scenario, each teammate truly owns a portion of the business.

4.)    Show & Tell- Offer a show and tell session of ideas, hobbies, topics of interests, or new skills learned. This allows teammates to share things that they are passionate about that may tie into overall business goals and offer application of transferable skills. When having the time to show and tell interests and ideas, it can also double as a brainstorming session where all teammates can be involved.

5.)    Hit the Road-Take your team outside of their normal setting. Once “Show & Tell” stories have been shared, incorporate a site visit to places that relate to the information shared. This could be done over a meal, for a meeting, or even team building activity. By fueling your team’s interests with your interest, this fuel can be channeled into a positive direction for your team.

 

Once you have tapped into new skills that can be applied to current strategies, ensure that you are keeping track of results and identifying aspects of the strategy that worked best. Most importantly, recognize your teammates for their contribution to the team goal.

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Why Internal Marketing Improves Team Performance

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As performance metrics are set, employees determine their map of success for the year and break their action plans down by quarter. Motivation can be lost as employees become more focused on the tasks associated with achieving a goal vs. the main reason of the goal. When employees are unable to understand their necessary role in achieving a goal and how the goal benefits their overall career success, actions steps can become muddied. Action plans can become daily checklists with a plan of moving through the list as fast as possible in order to move on to events and activities with more perceived value. One may ask “What is the perceived value of my team goals?” the only way to measure this is to capture the feedback of your team.

Feedback can be captured in a variety of different ways such as small meetings involving you and your employees, large meetings as well as traditional surveys. The most impactful format, however, would be to have one on one interactions with your team members to gauge their knowledge of the team goals, why they think the goals are important, how they connect with the goals and what aspects of the goals align with their professional motivators. During this interaction, it allows you to understand where disconnects may exist as well as ways for you to align the goals with that team member’s individual points of motivation. As a manager, this takes skill, focus, and patience. Each interaction that you have with the individual is a touch point to ensure that they are on track with the goals and ensuring that you are keeping the goals align with the motivators of the team member. This ongoing wheel of goal connection is necessary to maintain a healthy balance of keeping team members engaged as well as goals achieved.

Once a manager has mastered the art of understanding how to motivate their team and how to maintain a positive level of motivation, recognition of team success by the individual is key. Effective reward and recognition aren’t always based on gifts, awards, or certificates. It starts with understanding how to effectively market your teammates internally. WHEN YOUR TEAM WINS, YOU WIN AS A MANAGER. When your team feels valued and is genuinely valued, productivity levels stay high and team members feel that their role in the team is of purpose. Team members that feel they have no purpose in the team or organization become withdrawn, defensive and lack accountability for their behaviors. Internal Marketing helps connect team member plans of action and action taken to achieve goals with the organization.  The following are ways to effectively market your teammates internally:
MAKE SURE YOUR TEAMMATES KNOW THEIR ROLE IN YOUR TEAM- When having a team, the team is working towards one large overall goal for the team. However, while working towards that goal, each team member has a special piece to that puzzle. Start with making sure that your team members understand their puzzle piece, its importance and how their puzzle piece aligns with their motivators. If their piece of the puzzle isn’t supported with their passion and they aren’t motivated by owning their piece, rates of success will reduce. A teammate that does not own their piece of the puzzle is not helping the team. Understanding the root cause of this issue and addressing it is necessary if wanting to move forward with this teammate. Teammates must stay engaged to achieve the team goal and be ready for internal marketing.

MAKE SURE YOUR TEAMMATES KNOW THE ROLES OF THEIR TEAMMATES– When given a role within a team, teammates may tend to work in a silo and forget the role of their teammates. Teammates must understand their teammate’s piece of the puzzle because their pieces have to connect in order to achieve the big picture. If teammates are unaware of their teammate’s roles in the team’s overall success, celebrating and supporting the success of their teammates becomes more difficult. Thus, leading to less impact when exposed to internal marketing for their teammate. Therefore, as a manager, you must help teammates understand why they need each other and the benefit of supporting each other. WHEN A TEAMMATE IS SUCCESSFUL, YOU CAN BE SUCCESSFUL.

MAKE PROCESSES FOR TEAMMATE SUCCESS TRANSPARENT- As teammates align their pieces of the puzzle together, and discuss how they stay focused on their goal, the steps to achieving their goal must be transparent. By doing so, it allows the process to be repeated as applicable. With proven success from peers, teammates are more likely to implement a process. If successful processes aren’t shared internally, opportunities for recognition reduce, employees feel less valued for their work and teammates aren’t connected to the thought process of their peers. Lack of connection among peers can cause a lack of understanding, decrease inclusion, and reduce team cohesion.
After maintaining the steps outlined above, as a manager, you must establish ways to internally market your team. The internal marketing process should include you outlining your team goals to your peers as well as the action taken by your team members. You should also utilize meetings as a time to recognize team members for their goals and their successful action plans. After these word of mouth strategies have been implemented, you should move to electronic sources. This may include company newsletters, established profile updates to your teammate’s company bios, and posts around success strategies to your company blog outlining success steps of each of your teammates.
In conclusion, teammates that understand their role, understand their plan and are successful in being able to effectively adjust their plans are better positioned to achieve team goals. The work along the way is a process and a constant focus piece of maintaining daily tasks with individual motivators. As a manager, it is necessary to understand that work. The recognition begins with effective internal marketing. Internal marketing builds team cohesion, awareness of process as well as provides opportunities for teammates to feel genuinely valued.