Traditional practices of rewarding project members at the end of a project or the month are far too common to give your teamís motivation that edge they need to really focus on their work. Instead, you should look at more creative and personalized solutions to rewarding your team. Not only will it build better rapport and boost team morale, the end result in terms of your project is likely to be much improved in quality.
Adjust your bonus policy to incorporate giving mini-bonuses throughout a project (or even at the start of one). Too often organizations get caught up in the thought that if you give your employees too much too quickly, theyíll start lagging behind in their work and take the organization for granted. As project managers, it would help to break out of the mold and instead, reward your team when you decide it will help their productivity the most. Giving a team member a break (or an effective rotation policy) during a project can very well boost their productivity by several levels. A short break can even be given before the start of a grueling project.
Similarly, if you are awarding monetary bonuses, thereís no need to wait till the end of the project (especially if this a demanding project). If a team member really excels at a certain phase, itís much better to reward them with a mini-bonus right there. This will not only motivate them further, but also provide other team members incentive to improve.