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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1995

Diane Irvine and G. Ross Baker

This paper outlines a theoretical framework for studying the integration of ethnically diverse workforces in public service organizations. Individual and work group…

Abstract

This paper outlines a theoretical framework for studying the integration of ethnically diverse workforces in public service organizations. Individual and work group characteristics are viewed as determinants of social identity and organizational identification. Social Identity theory suggests that individuals develop self‐concept through identification with salient groups, including ethnic groups and organizational roles. The extent to which these identifications are competitive or synergistic may depend upon organizational and work group characteristics and on organizational policies concerning selection, performance appraisal, and rewards. Crossfunctional teamwork may provide an integrative mechanism which can promote intergroup relations and encourage greater organizational commitment among an ethnically diverse workforce. Crossfunctional teams can contribute to reduced intergroup conflict and promote the development of organizational identification. The benefits of crossfunctional teams will be particularly important in situations where the workforce is diverse, but work groups are ethnically homogeneous.

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International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 1996

Rebecca A. Proehl

Organizations are increasingly using crossfunctional teams to address broad‐scale organizational problems, and the potential of such teams is undeniable. Bringing a cross

Abstract

Organizations are increasingly using crossfunctional teams to address broad‐scale organizational problems, and the potential of such teams is undeniable. Bringing a crossfunctional perspective to organizational problems help build understanding, problem‐solving capabilities, co‐ordination, communication and, ultimately, improved quality and productivity. While the benefits are many, this study highlights the challenges. Over one‐half of the participants viewed their crossfunctional team’s work as unsuccessful, and these same individuals felt less optimistic about crossfunctional teams than they had before participating in one. While it is apparent that organizational leaders, are enthusiastically embracing team efforts, calls for additional analysis to explore the unique challenges of crossfunctional teams so organizations can consistently benefit from their efforts. Examines those factors that contributed to the success of the teams in this study and offers recommendations for working with crossfunctional teams.

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Leadership & Organization Development Journal, vol. 17 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7739

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Article
Publication date: 28 October 2001

Timothy W. Aurand, Carol DeMoranville and Geoffrey L. Gordon

Well‐documented corporate demands for crossfunctionally competent employees have instigated a wide variety of efforts by the educational community to integrate business…

Abstract

Well‐documented corporate demands for crossfunctionally competent employees have instigated a wide variety of efforts by the educational community to integrate business curricula. Many colleges and universities struggle to functionally integrate business programs that historically have been delivered by well‐defined, and often well‐siloed, disciplines. Drawing from the numerous published and unpublished case studies of crossfunctional integration attempts, this study develops a framework of critical issues to consider when developing an integrated program. The framework develops five major categories of issues (strategic, leadership, administrative, faculty, and student) to help universities identify typical program decisions and potential roadblocks that may inhibit the development of a successful program.

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American Journal of Business, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1935-5181

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Article
Publication date: 15 June 2010

Ricardo Santa, Mario Ferrer, Phil Bretherton and Paul Hyland

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of crossfunctional teams in the alignment between system effectiveness and operational effectiveness after the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of crossfunctional teams in the alignment between system effectiveness and operational effectiveness after the implementation of enterprise information systems (EIS). In addition, it aims to explore the contribution of crossfunctional teams to improvement in operational performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The research uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods, in a two‐stage methodological approach, to investigate the influence of crossfunctional teams on the alignment between system effectiveness and operational effectiveness and the impact of the stated alignment on the improvement in operational performance.

Findings

Initial findings suggest that factors stemming from system effectiveness and the performance objectives stemming from operational effectiveness are important and significantly well correlated factors that promote the alignment between the effectiveness of technological implementation and the effectiveness of operations. In addition, confirmatory factor analysis has been used to find the structural relationships and provide explanations for the stated alignment and the contribution of crossfunctional teams to the improvement in operational performance.

Research limitations/implications

The principal limitation of this study is its small sample size.

Practical implications

Crossfunctional teams have been used by many organisations as a way of involving expertise from different functional areas in the implementation of innovative technologies. An appropriate use of the dimensions that emerged from this research, in the context of crossfunctional teams, will assist organisations to properly utilise crossfunctional teams with the aim of improving operational performance.

Originality/value

The paper presents a new approach to measure the effectiveness of EIS implementation by adding new dimensions to measure it.

Details

Team Performance Management: An International Journal, vol. 16 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7592

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2005

Todd A. Boyle, Uma Kumar and Vinod Kumar

Purpose – This research aims to identify various organizational‐level factors influencing support for crossfunctional new product development (NPD) teams.

Abstract

Purpose – This research aims to identify various organizational‐level factors influencing support for crossfunctional new product development (NPD) teams. Design/methodology/approach – A total of 2,500 questionnaires where mailed in 2003 to managers of product development from Canadian and US manufacturing organizations operating in the machinery, computer, electronic product, electrical equipment, and transportation equipment manufacturing industrial sectors. A total of 269 usable questionnaires were returned for a response rate of 11.1 percent. Findings – Results of performing regression analysis indicate that the quality of communication between the functional disciplines involved in NPD activities, perceived risks and complexity of using crossfunctional NPD teams, and the complexity of the organization's NPD activities all influence organizational support for crossfunctional NPD teams. Based on the qualitative data, additional reasons why crossfunctional NPD teams may not be supported in organizations are identified and discussed. Research limitations/implications – The major limitation of this study is that the respondents are NPD managers. These managers commented on the extent that support for crossfunctional NPD teams exists at the team, departmental, and senior management levels. Future research should focus on gauging organizational support for crossfunctional NPD teams by directly surveying team members, functional managers, and senior managers. Practical implications – This study identifies various organizational‐level factors influencing support for crossfunctional NPD teams. Originality/value – This research is of value to managers using or implementing crossfunctional teams, as it indicates potential organizational‐level factors that may facilitate or hamper the usage of such teams. To researchers, it provides a starting point in studying the determinants of support for crossfunctional NPD teams, and crossfunctional teams in general.

Details

Team Performance Management: An International Journal, vol. 11 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7592

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2005

Elisa Fredericks

The purpose of this paper is to garner multiple perspectives from crossfunctional new product development (NPD) team members and determine point of contact in and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to garner multiple perspectives from crossfunctional new product development (NPD) team members and determine point of contact in and responsibilities throughout the development process.

Design/methodology/approach

The use of an integrative literature review and in‐depth interviews were two qualitative approaches to data collection in the study of crossfunctional NPD. A convenience sample initiated research efforts, then snowball sampling facilitated the completion of semi‐structured, face‐to‐face interviews among 94 team members in 11 firms. The literature review culled research from fields as distinct as communication, industrial design, and research and development. The in‐depth, semi‐structured design provided the permitted open‐ended investigation and some unplanned questions. Face‐to‐face questioning allowed for the reading of facial expressions, other forms of body language, and the free pursuit of interesting subtopics. The study design utilized a 19‐question, one‐page interview guide. Bi‐directional dialogue lasted 45 min to 1½ h.

Findings

Exploratory results revealed the importance of pre‐project meetings and the use of a formal process in securing crossfunctional involvement during product development. Qualitative findings uncovered that involvement depended on team understanding of the NPD process, an understanding of requisite roles and responsibilities, and the task required at various stages throughout the NPD process. Variances were noted between business‐to‐business and business‐to‐consumer teams.

Originality/value

This research obtained the perspectives of 20 teams from seven departments, and thereby permitted a more expansive and comprehensive understanding of crossfunctional NPD. Previous research incorporated responses from three departments at best. This research underscores the importance of early involvement among highly interdependent, crossfunctional team members as a prerequisite to enhanced understanding of project particulars and team dynamics. The resource‐based theory of competitive advantage and human capital theories accentuate the importance of a wide range of functional representation during the innovation process. The importance of pre‐project meetings and a formal product development process were detailed as well as supporting team member roles and responsibilities.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 13 June 2017

Joy M. Perrin and Justin Daniel

The purpose of this paper is to assist library administration in avoiding cross-functional team pitfalls.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assist library administration in avoiding cross-functional team pitfalls.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reports the results of years of cross-fucntiional teams at an academic Library. Reports results of years of cross-functional teams at an academic Library.

Findings

Through shared trial and errors, readers will be able to avoid pitfalls and formulate questions not previously considered for their pursuit of cross-functional teams.

Research limitations/implications

While this is a case study, the lessons learned can be applied at any library where cross-functional teams are considered.

Originality/value

This study provides an account of teams at an academic library spanning a decade. Trials and tribulations are discussed.

Details

Library Management, vol. 38 no. 4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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Article
Publication date: 30 March 2012

Shahla Ghobadi and John D'Ambra

This study aims to present a model that can be used for predicting effective knowledge sharing behaviors in crossfunctional project teams.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to present a model that can be used for predicting effective knowledge sharing behaviors in crossfunctional project teams.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawn from the extant literature, a coopetitive model of knowledge sharing is postulated. Data from 115 project managers are used to test the proposed model, using partial least squares (PLS).

Findings

The findings confirm the applicability and predictive power of the proposed model. Three dimensions of crossfunctional cooperation (cooperative task orientation, cooperative communication, and cooperative interpersonal relationships) were proved to directly drive effective knowledge sharing behaviors. The results show that competition affects effective knowledge sharing behaviors through influencing cooperative behaviors. In addition, this study shows that different dimensions of competition generate mixed impacts. Competition for tangible resources was found to positively affect cooperative communication of individuals, whereas competition for intangible resources (political competition) had negative impacts on cooperative communication and task orientations.

Research limitations/implications

This study contributes to the extant literature by presenting a model that predicts effective knowledge sharing practices in crossfunctional projects. In addition, the results advance the current understanding of the concept and modeling of coopetitive knowledge sharing.

Practical implications

The proposed model of this study can be used by managers in order to facilitate problematic knowledge sharing processes within crossfunctional teams.

Originality/value

This study stands as one of the first attempts in providing a model that explains the forces behind effective knowledge sharing behaviors in crossfunctional teams. The model explores coopetition effect in a systematic way, which has not been previously studied.

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2008

Rupak Rauniar, William Doll, Greg Rawski and Paul Hong

This paper seeks to empirically investigate how a heavyweight product manager (HW) can impact the crossfunctional team and project performance (PP) through actively…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to empirically investigate how a heavyweight product manager (HW) can impact the crossfunctional team and project performance (PP) through actively influencing the ways and the extent of strategic alignment (SA), shared project mission, and clarity of project targets in the early front‐end stage.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on past studies on leadership role theory and goal‐setting theory for teams, this study hypothesizes that the role of the HW for SA of the project, shared project mission, and clarity of the project target are positively related. The study further hypothesizes that these roles of the HW can have a positive impact on PP measures such as product cost, time, and customer satisfaction.

Findings

Primary data collected from 191 new product development (NPD) projects from the US automotive industry were analyzed using structural equation modeling techniques. All the hypotheses presented in this study regarding the role of the HW in a crossfunctional team are supported. These roles of the HW also seem to indicate a positive relationship with overall PP.

Practical implications

Rather than blindly subscribing to generic and prescriptive “best practices” for the HW, the causal relationship detailed in this study makes it now possible to rationalize the role of HW in crossfunctional product development teams. Through formal and informal influence of the HW, the project and the team gain SA, shared mission, and clear project targets that can drive better PP.

Originality/value

This is the first study to focus specifically on the role of HW in NPD in a crossfunctional team environment.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Book part
Publication date: 1 August 2008

Chi-Ying Cheng, Jeffrey Sanchez-Burks and Fiona Lee

In this chapter, we posit that identity integration, an individual difference variable measuring the degree to which multiple and disparate social identities are perceived…

Abstract

In this chapter, we posit that identity integration, an individual difference variable measuring the degree to which multiple and disparate social identities are perceived as compatible, moderates the relationship between team diversity and innovation. Prior research shows that individuals with higher levels of identity integration exhibit higher levels of innovation on tasks that draw from identity-related knowledge systems. In this chapter, we extend this research to examine how innovation can be increased in cross-functional teams. We propose that reinforcing the compatibility between functional identities within a team facilitates access to functionally unique knowledge systems, which in turn increases team innovation.

Details

Diversity and Groups
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-053-7

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