How a Team’s Behaviour Impacts Projects

Nov 7, 2019 | Project Management

We evaluate the success of a project by seeing if it has achieved the goals that were set for it in the beginning. However, in a competitive market, managers have to deal with emerging changes every now and then. This makes it extremely difficult to finish the project within the boundaries of scope, quality, time, and cost.

Managers have a limited amount of time in which they have to resolve countless problems. Of course, no manager can handle all problems on their own, and they have to rely on their team to deliver what’s needed. However, you won’t be able to do that unless you know how to manage the people around you.

Most management techniques tend to overlook how critical the role of the team is in project management. Regardless of how efficient and hardworking you are as a manager, you can still fail if your team doesn’t deliver as expected.

This is why you need to emphasize on Experience, Dynamics, and Human Psychology rather than just Processes to be a good project manager. Smart project managers focus on understanding how people function and learning with their experience. In this article, we will discuss some of the ways a team can impact a project.


Understanding the culture of your team members is one of the biggest factors when it comes to project management.

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Photographer: Austin Distel | Source: Unsplash

From the perspective of project management, the term culture encompasses how people act in a professional environment. A workplace’s culture is defined by the team, and the team’s behavior is defined by the culture.

It is important for a project manager to interpret what the kind of culture their organization has. However, doing that is extremely difficult, especially when you have to manage people spread across different regions.

People may respond differently to your instructions according to the culture they’re associated with. This may affect the productivity of your team and your ability to achieve goals within the given timeframe.

For this reason, managers have to be quick on their feet. While it may not be easy and clear cut, investing your time and attention in understanding the culture of your team members can help managers cope with problems more efficiently.

Level of Engagement

Engaging team members in a project is critical to its success. However, this too depends on the nature of employees in your team. Every person has a unique personality and different ways of engaging with people.

It’s possible that they don’t feel comfortable with the level of input you want from them. Other times, they may engage much more than others, and even speak over some team members. Therefore, project managers have to balance both sides of the coin effectively.

It is extremely important for project managers to lay the groundwork to engage team members and stakeholders. This will help them maintain a good relationship with all members and stakeholders in both the short and the long term.

You must monitor the level of engagement of individual team members across the life cycle of the project. You should also address their emotional and personal expectations to bring about their best performance.

If you don’t address these issues yourself, it would be extremely difficult to create a good working environment among your team. Consequently, it would affect the performance of your team and make it harder for them to achieve the targets you set for them.

The Level of Motivation

Each one of us is driven by our emotions. While we expect people to keep their emotions at bay in a professional environment, it can be hard for people to do that on certain occasions. The reason is that our emotions have a huge effect on our level of motivation.

A person’s level of motivation is directly proportional to how successful they will be in tackling challenges head-on and overcoming the adversities they face. Regardless of how talented people are, it’s difficult for them to work in an environment where they don’t feel motivated.

Full focus at a coffee shop
Photographer: Tim Gouw | Source: Unsplash

Keeping the team motivated has always been a long-standing challenge for most project managers. Therefore, to be a good project manager, you should have the expertise to manage both the technical and the emotional aspects of your team.

Negligence in this matter can also cause a high performing and strongly skilled employee to exhibit negative attitudes due to their lack of motivation.If you don’t manage both factors simultaneously, you’ll delay important projects that will end up costing much higher than what you expected.

Behavioral Risks

A behavior is a range of actions and mannerisms exhibited by your team members. We may have different perceptions of people when we assign certain tasks to people. However, most times, people do not behave as we expect them to and display hidden characteristics over time.

It’s entirely possible that the team member you thought was distant and uninvolved in discussions was just figuring out how to adjust in a new environment. To be able to use people according to their talents, you need to understand the hidden aspects of their behaviors and get the most of them.

Still, some people can do the opposite of this and change their behavior in a negative way. Their change of behavior can disrupt the flow of work and cause unnecessary delays.


In most cases, planning tasks might not be the biggest problem for project managers. Instead, the greatest challenge for managers is how to communicate what they want from their team. During a project, there are hundreds of open communication channels between project team members and stakeholders.

In this extensive exchange of information, it can be extremely difficult for people to avoid confusion. Therefore, it is extremely important to identify which of these channels yield positive and fruitful interactions.

As project managers, we need to establish a conducive environment for nurturing positive interactions between team members. Doing so clears out any confusion and allows your team to work in cohesion and produce better results.

Proficient project management is no easy feat, especially if you’re working with a complex team of individuals, and firefighting problems to keep the project on track. However, if you manage your team effectively, you can transform your team into your greatest strength.

So, are you ready to give a career as a project manager a try? If so consider signing up below or visit us at to learn more!

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