Post-project fatigue

Big projects can last months and even years. They consume the workdays of you and your team and, oftentimes, your nights and weekends. Whether it’s a major fulfillment, a companywide rebrand or an organizational restructure, you are laser focused as you count down the days to launch, planning and, yes, even scrambling at times, to complete everything you need to do as that deadline looms.

Here at Bounce Innovation Hub, we recently completed a 27,000-square-foot renovation and construction project on the first floor of our nine-story building. From the moment I started as Bounce’s CEO in March 2018, this project was my top priority. If we were going to be a place where people work, collaborate and grow their businesses, this had to be somewhere they wanted to be.

As of the grand opening on May 22, 2019, we’re open to the public, which meant adding day-to-day operations of the first floor to that of the entire building. I noticed that some team members jumped right in; others did not. It was a highly successful event, and our team works very hard on behalf of the entrepreneurs we serve, but we needed to find a way to re-energize. Here are some of the things we did to help our team get back up and running at full capacity.

Allow for time off

Chances are your team puts in a lot of extra hours on an event or project. Whether you have a flexible work schedule or not, be open to allowing employees to take some PTO (not vacation or sick time) to help them rejuvenate.

Celebrate

You worked hard, so celebrate a job well done. It’s a great way to say thank you for going the extra mile. Your team will feel appreciated and energized for what comes next.

Stop and reflect

Take some time to decompress and talk about the project — what went right or wrong? For the Bounce team, we had only been working together for a short time when the construction started, so we had to come together and fast. We learned a lot about each other and were able to identify strengths and areas of improvement.

Redirect and jump back in

There are probably a number of smaller projects that were neglected, especially in the final weeks of the bigger project. Encourage team members to focus on something else that can fill the void and get them feeling productive again, even if it’s not a top priority.

Break it up

Sometimes after a big project, it’s hard to focus. Encourage team members to break up their work into short timelines and easy deadlines. Bite off just a bit, and even a small task will feel like a huge accomplishment.

Post-project fatigue can affect your team if not acknowledged and handled appropriately. Take some time to assess where each person is at and allow them what they need, within reason, to get back to where they need to be.

Doug Weintraub is CEO of Bounce Innovation Hub and an industry leader with more than 30 years of business and entrepreneurial experience in Northeast Ohio.