Competition Breeds Cooperation – If You Do It Right

tower-of-certifications-4The Greenville News, a Gannett Company, placed in Market Motive’s Top 10 Digital Marketing Teams for 2013 after their 48 person team earned 108 certifications in just over six months.

“One of our teams was quite competitive [...] they tend to be competitive and want to be stars, which is what we want. In fact, one of the posts outside my office has all of the certificates of completion posted on the post for that team …” – Maggie Krost, VP of Sales & Marketing, The Greenville News Media Group

This competitive, success driven culture didn’t arise accidentally. Krost suggests these four steps to replicate their success:

1. The leadership team has to be committed to the program’s success
Buy-in from the team starts with buy-in from the top. Your team will be more likely to jump on board if they know that the training is part of a larger vision and that you support their efforts.

2. Expectations have to be set with everyone
Make goals clear and measurable. Your team needs to know what’s expected of them and when it’s due. Clear expectations give the team clear goals and give you something solid to hold them accountable to.

3. Make it fun; show the benefit of how this is going to help everyone be successful
Help your team *want* to improve their skills. Through the spirit of competition, turn the training into something that’s fun and a privilege to be a part of. Focus on the end goal and why it matters.

4. Congratulate people as they’re making progress and doing the right thing
Catch your team members red handed – doing something good! Whether it’s earning a certification, progressing through the course, or seeing results after applying what they’ve learned, notice what they’re doing well, and point it out. Congratulate them!

“It’s certainly not rocket science. It’s just following a process and sticking with it.” – Krost

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