The workers are unmotivated or demoralized


The workers are unmotivated, burned out or demoralized.


Prevention of some of the causes of lack of motivation and low morale are dealt with in BurnedOutWorkers.  It should be noted that failure to address almost any type of risk can result in this sort of problem, but of particular note are BadFitToSchedule, ChangingRequirements, DysfunctionalTeam, LackOfConsensus, LackOfDirection, LostWork, UnknownProcess and UnproductiveDistractions.  The workers need to know their work is valued and not being wasted.  They need to know that their welfare is not being given very low priority.

Prevention, Amelioration, Cure


In addition to addressing those risks that impact on the workers’ welfare, cause dissent or waste of effort, there are approaches to address morale directly.  A project can benefit from having a PatronRole that gives the project worth in the eyes of the enterprise.  It is important to recognise and CompensateSuccess.  In cases of failure, limit the impact on morale by holding a FailedProjectWake.


Modern Agile approaches have some extra viewpoints in this respect.  An agile team will work at a SustainablePace, and people are definitely valued, it is one of the prime tenets of the Agile Alliance manifesto.  One interesting comment that has been made about XP is that “an XP project always fails”.  In fact, what the comment refers to is that by the end of the project there may be a list of things still to do, but their benefit is deemed not to be worth their cost, so they are cancelled.  DSDM and any other agile approach that works on prioritised requirements will need a similar shift of outlook on what ‘cancellation’ means.