In mathematics we say One Plus One is equal to two. But when it comes to people, it is only partially true. Most of the times two people can carry out much bigger tasks than the sum of the tasks they carryout individually. This is known as the synergy effect.
Teams are very important aspect in lean manufacturing. All the success of the system is based on the team spirit. To be able to successfully use tools like work cells, pull scheduling, 5S we need very strong team sprits within the organization. If one even a single person is not functioning correctly, the whole system will collapse.
Goal setting is done for teams, not for individuals. Recognition is also carried out in teams. This will make people to think in teams.
There will be formal teams to carryout specific tasks. For an example quality circles are formally formed cross functional teams meant to improve the quality of the products. These teams will consist of managers, workers and other influencing parties. Teams will be strengthen with team building exercises.
As an organization, at the end of the day what is important is the final outcome, not the individual performances.
30th August 2011 From India, Bangalore