Why Do Teams?
survey that I recently performed with top managers of various
industries I asked the question: What do you think the company in
the year 2010 would look like? I received an interesting response
from the majority of the respondents. This is their view:
company of the future will receive orders via Computer Aided Order
Entry/ Receipt processes. A person would not even need to be
available. After the order is received it would be turned over to
engineering where it would be decided whether we would make it in
house our broker it out to an outside engineering firm. If we decide
to make it in-house it would be handled by Computer Aided Design/
Engineering. After Engineering was finished with their design,
through the automation process, it would then be handed to
Manufacturing, where Computer Aided Manufacturing processes would be
would design the process through computers and then the parts would
be ordered through the EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) environment
directly to the supplier base. Parts would be built by the supplier
and shipped to the customer at need and delivered only to
"point of use" for that specific material. As the material
is delivered it would be taken off of the trucks using RGMM (Robotic
Guided Material Movers) to the area where the material is needed.
material, of course, would never be delivered unless it was Just In
Time. Robotic Manufacturing Devices will take the material and
produce the product based on what we learned from Computer Aided
Manufacturing, and no mistakes will be made. Artificial Intelligence
(AI) will monitor the whole process and ensure that everthing is
made according to exacting customer specifications.
the product is complete this system will take the finished product
from last operation to the packaging/ shipping operation where the
product will be automatically packaged and shipped to the customer.
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Let's Get Real!
the people involvement? There is no team element involved here! Team
driven companies are what the most succesful companies are using,
but it's not present in this survey. The reality is that teams have
come and they are going to stay. The old methods of management which
stressed total automation are gone. There will always be a need for
people and there will always be a need for people to work in
coordinated teams. This is the purpose of this paper.
An Environment to
let's look at what motivation for a team is. Motivation is to
provide an incentive to stimulate someone to action. I prefer to
look at it, in the team building sense, as providing the team member
a climate to succeed. When we think of it our team members
are spending no less than 8 hours a day at their jobs. On top of
that they have to get up early in the morning to get ready. They
probably fight traffic to get to their place of work (learning new
finger gestures on their way in from other happy motorists). They
work hard all day then they have another fun drive home. They have
to allow time for sleep, so when one adds it up they're spending
more than 2/3 rds of their day working. Don't we owe it to these
people to allow them a chance to succeed at what they are doing.
Team leaders are afforded the opportunity to make this happen for
up to the team leader to understand that team environments are
motivating when three things are present: 1) The member sees results
for themselves and their other team members, 2) Perpetual team
measurement with candid dialogue on its outcome and, 3) The team and
each of its members feel a sense of accomplishment. Everyone likes cookies.
Praise and pats on the back are an essential part of the process
of team development. I don't know of anyone who drives to work to
purposely screw up (well there was that one guy, but he was a
politician). Most of us want to do well.
To be Continued
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