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Motivating the individuals and the team under economical problems

Last post 08:55 am December 9, 2022 by Gabor B.
5 replies
08:55 am December 5, 2022

Hi all,

I have a coaching problem with myself, therefore i would like to get some help or opinion. Our organization has a huge struggle with the contracts. in the past, management fired a lot of external people. also with the new hiring phase they could only provide the individuals a year contract. The management is really in a struggle and they really tried to resist the hard wave of economical problems. For now the external people forced the left company. The new ones are also do not feel good which they already shared with the management. For me the struggle is how can I make them motivated under this hard problem. For me the first necessity is completely missing which is the money/contract. Do not know what to do.. any tips to help me as a scrum master?

Best Regards

11:27 am December 5, 2022

For me the first necessity is completely missing which is the money/contract. 

You're probably right. While motivation is more likely to be found in the intangibles -- such as autonomy, mastery, a sense of purpose, and perhaps a feeling of being appreciated -- money and contractual safety are important, and can be a necessary foundation.

So, what are management doing to take care of this, and to provide the very foundation you already know is needed? Perhaps your first course of action lies not with the team, but with them.

02:54 pm December 5, 2022

Hi Ian,

They are sharing the economical updates with the company very frequently like a town hall meeting. In addition to meetings they are creating new campaigns for new orders also they are just freezing the new hires and if possible they are trying to not fill the vacancies. New feature support is on freeze, they really do not burned the teams with capacity problems. however after 1 year later is a big uncertainty. From economical perspective they have the problem with interest rates and the solving part is just a mathematical problem for the upper management. 


From my perspective , i could not find a way to motivate the people.. Even i am really demotivated as scrum master. The team would like to continue in the company, but the management clearly explained and already fired external people. Also for the internal people they just delivered 1 year contracts. i really do not know how to overcame this problem with the help of management. which actions do i have to take as a scrum master is a big question for me too.

Best Regards

04:57 pm December 5, 2022

You will have to appeal to their, and your, professionalism.  While uncertainty of getting a paycheck for the long term is a big concern, you are getting one now.  As a professional, you should be willing to do the work that is being asked of you and do it to the best of your ability.  Consider a scenario where you have contracted with a group of people to do work on your home.  The contract will end when the work is completed.  You still expect them to do their best work and to do it in a timely manner.  Why should your current situation be any different? 

You also should consider that you may work with some of these people again.  Your professional reputation is going to be a big part of finding another job.  

You cannot fix the problem entirely, as I'm sure you well know.  In the world today, the paycheck is a big part of the motivation for doing a job.  But from what you say, the people there are getting a paycheck.  So, they need to earn it. 

I will admit that your situation is not ideal.  But compared to others, it is good.  While the Scrum Master is not considered a leader, an individual can be one.  In this case, you can be a leader for them by helping them better understand their situation and showing them how much professionalism matters. 

05:47 pm December 5, 2022

Hi Daniel

Thanks a lot for your answer! Indeed you are so true. Still i will try my best and hopefully the team will also act professional for the future days. 

all the best

10:47 pm December 8, 2022

I also assume that you might be looking for a job soon because of the uncertainties at your current company. Your appeal with your future employer will be higher if you can prove that you are motivated and engaged even in an uncertain situation or while you are serving your notice.

It is not professional to "check out" during uncertain times -- bring the change that you would like to see in your team.

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