Self-DirectedTeams have become a main approach for developing the business.
Automobile manufacturerChrysler has created a “Smart Manufacturing” process which has proven successfuldue to the application of SDT’s. SDTs are defined by Silvermanand Propst (1996) as “A group of employees who have day-to-day responsibilityfor managing themselves and the work they do. Members of self-directed teamstypically handle job assignments, plan and schedule work, make productionrelated decisions and take actions on problems. Members of self-directing teamswork with a minimum of direct supervision.” In such a teamthe manager’s role is to meet the need of the team through the provision of leadership,stratagem and incentivized guidance (Douglas & Gardner, 2004). SDT’s are comprised of 5-15 members who are responsible forperforming and managing all or most aspect of a set of interdependent worktasks (Yeats and Hyten, 1998). Variousorganizational behavioral experts suggested that “an SDT is not created orappointed. It’s grown.
It’s nurtured and guided until it can start operating onits own. Over time, the empowerment by the team facilitator switches to theteam members, and the team becomes self-managed. Facilitators begin with adirecting / controlling RL Wolfe –behavior, through to coaching, involving andteaching others to lead themselves. Whilst this process is occurring, the teamitself shifts from executing the facilitator’s instructions, through to participating,planning and eventually, taking responsibility and control.” Solving some ofthe preexisting issues are helped by experiment in SDTs, to increase the designcapacity there are concerns that need immediate attention. Problems has been observedbetween maintenance staff and line workers at the other two unionized plantsbefore implementing the STD’s.
A new role of technicianswas refined after the incorporation of STD’s inCorpus Christi plant. Gradually workers in material and operations assume that technicianswere given more importance and their opinions were not valued by thecoordinator. According to Nelson (2006), when the employee feels avoided andunheard then their performance tends to decrease and this results in lowproductivity. Limitations of teamresponsibilities is one more major issue.
Coordinators were the decisions initially.It was habituated that the team will take hold of their daily work activitiesafter the incorporation of STD’s. 80% of the opinions aremade by the teams who want control over the amount of overtime they work. Itshows that goals, salary and profits are out of limitations to be taken by theteam for decisions. Team should be responsible at least in determining theproduction goals were salary and profits are not in their control. According togoal setting theory employees are highly inspired to perform when a specificgoal is established and a feedback on progress is offered and there will bemuch more participates, productivity by the team when ownership is given to settingof their own goals. Employee Empowerment, Work Force Management and Motivationare three main areas where issues are identified at the work place.
Motivationand Employee Empowerment goes together in SDT and work force should be managedin a way that promotes these aspects. Following arethe ways to improve that can be solution to all the existing problems. There should be a dedicationby the Management to SDT.
The goals and objectives of the SDT should be overlooked by the management team and commit their approach. Empowerment ofemployees is the main goal of self-direct approach and it shouldn’t be compromised in any way as the success of SDT is directlyproportional to empowerment of employees. Studies and reports of the industrymust be maintained by the management to track the progress in the field oforganizational behavior to find ways of improving employee motivation andempowerment. Managementshould make sure that the team is participate in the actual job design,organizational goal setting, performance appraisals and incentives by providingthe culture of motivation and empowerment. Information from other facilities where SDT’s have been implanted successfully should be a main reference. Secondly, Feedback plays amain role and should be part of the open communication across the organization whenopen the mind for continuous improvement. SDT’s need to understand the problemscaused by them by way of feedback from the coordinators and teammates.
Issues mustbe disused with the coordinators, so that the issue can be visualized and thenit need to be taken to the team with possible solutions and let the team discussand find out the best posable solutions. Finally, empowerment is allabout making the employees involved in the process of giving the authority tomake decisions which makes the employees motived by providing the support whichintern increases the productivity of the organization ReferenceJennifer,M. (2013 June 6).
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