Team Approach in an Assembly Line Job

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The issue of whether a team approach in an assembly line job will positively affect production is a controversial one but a closer examination reveals that it is very difficult to implement a successful team-based approach.

Although under the concept of intrinsic motivation, this approach has several advantages because it reduces the boredom associated with performing repetitive tasks and makes the workers more knowledgeable and involved about the product being manufactured, the team approach is not very promising using the team and individual pay for performances concepts and the specialization concept.

Using the concept of team pay for performance, the team approach will be unlikely to deliver good results for several reasons:

1. The difficulty of defining and measuring the goals and appropriate rewards of a team

2. The difficulty of building a team because of a lack of fit with a team culture.

3. Free-riding effect. Some team members will tend to work less since the group is given the same award

4. Group pressure could lead to conformity rather than creativity with the possibility of harassment when a team member is under-performing

5. If the employees tasks are not correlated enough, it will be difficult to measure the team performance accurately

6. Unwillingness to accept new members since it might decrease productivity

Using the concept of individual pay for performance, the team approach will be unlikely to produce a positive effect because individual plans may:

1. destroy cooperation among peers

2. sour working relationships between employees and supervisors because this approach promotes inflexibility and single-mindedness

3. work against achieving quality goal

While the concept of non-specialization leads to multi-skilling, it often does that to the detriment of quality. In fact, employees might be deprived of promotions because the notion of area of expertise will disappear and a...
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