Efficient resource planning – people’s motivation as a key factor

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Efficient resource planning – people’s motivation as a key factor

With a variety of software tools resource management became easier for project managers and team leads.. but we believe that the proper application is not panacea.

Undoubtedly, we have access to different planners, calendars, capacity planning/ tracking/ distribution and whatever tools, which facilitate lots of processes, both for managers and employees.

But who cares about applications, if people have no desire to work?

Stress, overstrain.. laziness? 

Unfortunately, these factors are common and they mutually affect teams and team leaders. If leader cannot properly distribute tasks between workers and calculate working time, people become overloaded and stressed, with no motivation to work. That’s why efficiency decreases and as a result, the leader becomes nervous, may express negative emotions to colleagues and just aggravate the situation.

Team lead – guilty of everything?

Of course not. We are all humans who are dependent on emotions or just human factor, but the main thing which makes you a really good leader, is the possibility to analyze not only the team’s mistakes, but your own.

Sometimes it’s necessary to deepen into people interactions and try to understand who is doing something wrong.

Why capacity planning is important?

Capacity planning process is one of the key elements of successful cooperation across teams. It is a must to know how much time needs an employee to complete a certain amount of tasks, as well as awareness of how many projects may handle this person at a reasonable timeframes. If manager does not know how to do capacity planning, it may lead to an undesired situation. Let’s have an example :

  • Without proper calculation your staff may become overloaded
  • Because of constant exhaustion people start to think that they receive inappropriate attitude and become unmotivated
  • After that, they do their job inaccurate, refuse to compromise with team leads or supervisors , even show growing discontent
  • As a result,the a quality of projects suffers, stuff decides to leave them and projects fail. Stakeholders are indignant and it is hard to reach a compromise
  • All of these events negatively affect yours and your company’s reputation and represents your team to potential clients as an unreliable one

So, as we can see, the thing which has led to such a situation, was lack of attention to the main value of each company – people.

Resource management really matters because your subordinates are simple people with their basic needs and desires, which cannot be neglected.

We have no intention to reinvent the wheel, so we consider that the simplest way to make people do their job efficiently is to motivate them and ,as it is commonly said, find a “clue to their hearts”.

For some companies such an approach is not suitable, but who knows, maybe implementing of new methodologies will improve management process.

Theory X and Theory Y – understanding people’s motivation.

This theory was developed by Douglas McGregor and according to this theory, there are 2 styles of management –   authoritarian (Theory X)  and participative (Theory Y).

Leaders with the first approach tend to think in a more negative way, assuming that their workers are unmotivated, lazy and dislike their job. As a result, managers use the “stick and carrot” method, constantly rewarding or punishing employees. The working process is tightly controlled by management and often employees do not show any initiative or creativity, people are just doing their routine.

Employees avoid responsibility,  have no ambitions and need to be supervised at every step.

Some big corporations use such management type due to the high number of employees and  mostly routine tasks which need to be done in any case within the deadlines.       
Talking about next theory, we should point out the positive leader’s attitude towards the team, with decentralized and trust – based type of cooperation. In such a way, relations between leader and subordinates are more friendly, people display desire to work, seek kind of responsibility and a little direction. Such teams show more initiative,are self-motivated and want the ability to grow professionally. Leader, in his turn, encourages people to develop their skills, involve them in decision making and gives more space and time for employees to work. This type of leadership is highly characteristic for agile teams.

We cannot say that one of the aforementioned management types is the best option, but a mixture of both may work. Nowadays most of the companies use a combination of these methods. If you want to develop your working process, just try to change leadership type, adopt some core principles of X and Y methods, make your working system more flexible to innovations, compare everything and you will find out what works the best in your case, for sure.

Great leader is a great planner, and vice versa. These concepts are interdependent and set the tone for the entire workflow. When you trust and believe your team, you will better plan their tasks and schedule. As a result employees will work more efficiently, without missing deadlines and with pleasure.  When a team leader sees positive results, he/she will be grateful to the team and will make the working process very comfortable accordingly, and all of the above – mentioned will repeat in the future, again and again, as a rolling wheel.

Overloaded team with stressful schedule

Satisfied team with proper schedule

The truth is simple – in order to become a good planner and leader, pay more attention to your teams. Do not be afraid to try a new approach to the working process, discover resource management best practices, build trustful relations with your teams and capacity planning will become your favorite activity.

By the way, did you know that underload is as stressful as overload? No? Come here to know more – Why work underload is as stressful as overload

 



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