We all have career dreams. We imagine what to do at the pinnacle of our professional life and how it feels. The people you lead have them as well. Why don’t you start a conversation about it? Get the long version of their story, and find out what motivates them. Ask about the skills they have to gain to thrive in their professional dream scenario. Then it is up to you to give your people assignments in their current job that help them to develop those skills. Organizational goals are aligned with long-term individual interests. That drives engagement more than a bonus!
You’re under pressure because you definitely started this important project too late. How