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Cross Functional Teamwork

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In the words of great existentialist theorists, “No man is an island unto himself.” That is to say, life is a constant process of interrelations. This is similar to the idea that business must organize a collective of individuals from various disciplines into one singular, purpose driven whole that operates in concert towards the collective good of the company and specifically defined goals. Such a concept is commonly referred to as a “cross functional team.”

            A cross functional team is exactly what the semantics of its name would imply: a collection of different people who have different skills, duties and functions are brought together in order to work within the framework of a specific team with singular goals. “A number of organizational benefits can result from the successful use of sourcing teams. The highest perceived benefit from cross-functional sourcing team interaction, according to team members and leaders, is the ability to bring greater knowledge and skill together at one time.” (Monzcka) A person will design skills can design a product; a person with production skills can build the product; a person with marketing skills can then develop a sales paradigm for the product; and so on. These individuals do not exists as separate entities with limited knowledge of what the other is doing, but rather they work together within the framework of a unified whole in order to achieve the desired outcome.

            The main obstacles to such unification are the sin of insolence. That is to say, when a singular aspect of the team (or specific) individual is not working for the better of the team as a whole, but rather is ego driven and self serving and not looking out for the health of the broad picture. Such an individual needs to be removed from the team as soon as possible!

            There are also obstacles that are more structural in nature. Communications or lack there of, can contribute to the decline of the productivity of the team. The institution of a proper communication network between various teams or division will greatly enhance productivity.

            A reward system is also highly advised for those looking to make sure that the teamwork that exists within the framework of company is properly handled. In other words, the team should be presented with a gesture of appreciation in order. “Individual rewards should also be examined closely to determine to what degree they should be kept and how new performance standards and appraisals should be conducted. A specific set of measures should be used to evaluate the effectiveness of individual rewards as well as team rewards. Also, team leaders should examine the value of intrinsic motivation and how it will increase in team members as team reward systems is used.” (Allred)

            The ability to advance the cause of team work and team building within the health care industry would be similar to the way in which it is advanced in other industries with the main differences being that the specifics of the program would be tailored to the needs of the particular industry and to “support targeted objectives such as improved customer service, teamwork, technology implementation, high performance and other initiatives. These efforts may be proactive when planning for the future, or problem centered by responding to current issues.” (CMD) While this may sound simple, it does require research on the part of management in order to pinpoint exactly what needs must be met and how to implement them. In doing this, a cohesive cross functional health care industry team will be enacted.


Allred, Sara. 27 October 2005. “Team Reward Systems.” 15 January 2007.

URL http://www.workteams.unt.edu/literature/paper-sallred.html

ers. Date Unknown. “Corporate Culture.” 15 January

2007 URL http://www.cmd-hmc.com/corporate-culture.htm

Monzcka, Robert M. Unknown 2007. “Cross-Functional Sourcing Team Effectiveness.”

15 January 2007. URL http://www.capsresearch.org/publications/pdfs-


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