Question & Answer: Should we focus upon specialization or should the staff be cross trained in various areas?…

Should we focus upon specialization or should the staff be cross trained in various areas? What are your thoughts?

Expert Answer

Specialization,

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Pros:

we could also say division of labor is one of the main strategy of modern industrial soceity. it increases the efficiency and target margins for the company. for example, if we take a group of people who can make pens completely, then they could make 300 pens in a day seperately. given that these group of people are specialized workers, then they could make 40,000 pens in a day. so, it is obvious that the specially skilled workmen would have a upper hand when compare to “jack of all trades and master of none”. hence, speialization makes production line manufacturing very easy to handle and also cost effective by decreasing all the time wasted by the workmen while switching from one task to another.

cons:

now, if these were few of the pros of specialization. then the cons would be monotony and boredom. when an employee does the same work again and again on a daily basis, it leads him into boredom and thus disrupting the production process by proving to a speed bump. The absence of enthusiasm would lead to the serious impact on the production and profitability of the company,

Cross Training

pros:

Cross training provides the employee with a never ending enthusiasm, as he would be learning something everyday through his experiences. it provides the employee with an oppurtunity to imporve their skill set and having additional skills would always be impressive. this would also be benifiting for the management, as there would always be a back up when it comes to crisis. in case of highs and lows in the production, workmen could be shifted from one field to another for filling up the places where they are needed most

cons:

There could be some employees who do not want to learn new skills. they would be happy with their routine life doing what they know best and would be unwilling to take new responsibility.

the workmen could perceive that the management wants to make them do more work for the same salary.

planning is most important here, as eberything could go wrong with one step. the management has to plan which employee suits which skill best even though he has all the skill sets.

Hence, with commitment and hardwork done by the mamagement, cross training could prove to be a better option as

a) From a management point of view: it would mitigate the risk factor at times of highs and lows, could possibly discover leaders who would be able to elarn new things and perform well even in a given time constraints, enhances the team work, increases the efficiency and productivity of the company and also saves cost

b) from the employee point of view, it would prove to be an oppurtunity for growth,increases work satisfaction, helps them develop new skills, motivates them to be better, builds teams and inter team relations.

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