چشم انداز تیم در توسعه محصول : چگونگی مسائل استراتژی دانش
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Technovation, Volume 31, Issues 2–3, February–March 2011, Pages 118–127
In today’s more complex multinational and technologically sophisticated environment, the group has re-emerged in importance as the project team. Work teams are important to organizations in general, but are especially critical in product development because they span many functional areas including engineering, marketing, manufacturing, finance, etc., and new product teams must frequently be composed of individuals from different backgrounds and perspectives. In these circumstances, this paper addresses the contingency role that knowledge strategy plays in explaining the relationship between team vision and product development performance. After studying the team vision on 78 new product developments from a wide variety of firms, we found that effective team vision varies depending on the knowledge strategy—defined in terms of punctuated equilibrium in the explorative cycle, low ambidexterity and high ambidexterity. Our results demonstrate that while trade-off is positively associated with success in all strategies, clarity is only associated with low ambidexterity strategies and strategy-fit is only associated with high ambidexterity strategies.
Organizations have become increasingly dependent on cross-functional teams to carry out their R&D tasks and innovate. Recent empirical research shows that most firms have implemented cross-functional teams for the majority of new product development projects undertaken (Hong et al., 2005). Product development is becoming multidisciplinary and technologically complex and occurs at intersections of different fields. Additionally, research substantiates links between effectiveness and collectivist notions such as cohesion, coordination or cooperation (Teasley et al., 2009). Furthermore, the effectiveness of product development is contingent upon the integration of different specialized capabilities, strong functional groups, large numbers of people and multiple pressures (Perry-smith and Vincent, 2008 and Nellore and Balachandra, 2001). Clark and Wheelwright (1993) and Coopers (1999), among many other researchers, also suggest that the success of product development is determined by the integration of abilities of both upstream (e.g. research and development, marketing and design engineering) and downstream activities (e.g. manufacturing engineering, operations and quality control. However, despite the virtues of cross-functional teams, which have been widely extolled, and the increasing attention being devoted to understanding their integration process, different perspectives and backgrounds may lead to conflict and result in negative outcomes (Keller, 2001). In light of the conflicting literature, there is still a relative dearth of studies investigating team-level factors influencing such integration among all of the functions involved in product development and their effects on performance (Hoegl and Parboteeah, 2007). Literature in the area of innovation has suggested that performance can be affected by two sets of factors—the characteristics of the team and the contextual influence of the team (Sethy, 2000 and Lynn and Akgün, 2001). Accordingly, this paper considers variables related to these two sets of factors. Regarding team characteristics, it focuses on team vision because this concept is considered important to minimize the effects of the functional diversity in the group and to promote better performance. In this paper, team vision refers to the existence of a common background, a clear set of goals, priorities, trade-offs and a good understanding of the overall goals of the firm and of the project itself. As Brown and Eisenhardt (1995) state, although this aspect of the team is considered critical, our understanding of exactly what team vision is and its link with product development performance is very weak. Crawford and Di Benedetto (2000) also point out that there is surprisingly little research on vision at the product development level. Although team vision may be able to influence product development performance, it may not be, in itself, sufficient to explain product development performance. The ability of team vision to produce better performance can be helped or harmed by contextual influences of the team (Olson et al., 1995 and Lynn and Akgün, 2001). Team or group context reflects influences or contingences stemming from the team environment (Doolen et al., 2003). Abernathy and Clark (1985) suggested that the importance of innovation in competition depended on its capacity to influence the firm’s existing resources, knowledge and skills. Danneels (2002) adopted the same basic principle and categorized product developments based on whether the required capabilities already existed in the firm, or were new. From this point of view, product development operates under different logic, so a firm should choose the one in which they develop the new product. Previous research has already pointed out the need to analyze variations on the degree of newness of knowledge in explaining key-organizational questions related to innovation (Freel and de Jong, 2009, Ellonen et al., 2009 and Jayawarna and Holt, 2009; Gobbo and Olsson, 2010; Rhee et al., 2010). This paper draws on a knowledge strategy (Choi et al., 2008) to examine how knowledge exploration and exploitation actions moderate the relationship of team vision and product development effectiveness. The conceptual distinction between exploration and exploitation (March, 1991) has emerged as an underlying theme in research on organizational learning and strategy (Levinthal and March, 1993 and Bierley and Chakrabarti, 1996; Vera and Crossan, 2004), innovation (Rothaermel and Deeds, 2004) and organization theory (Holmqvist, 2003). Exploration is a manifestation of organizational learning that entails activities such as search, variation, experimentation, challenging existing ideas and research and development. It is thus about improving and renewing the organization’s expertise and competences to compete in changing markets by introducing the variations needed to provide a sufficient amount of choice to solve problems (March, 1991). Exploitation is a different manifestation of organizational learning that involves efficiency, selection, implementation, control, refining and extending existing skills and capabilities. It reflects how the firm harvests and incorporates existing expertise and competences into its operations, not only to economize the efficiency of existing resource combinations (Levinthal and March, 1993) but also to create new ones. According to these differences between exploration and exploitation, it is expected that team vision will have different effects on product development performance depending on the product development knowledge strategy—defined in terms of exploration and exploitation. Thus, focusing on team level analysis, the purpose of this article is to define team vision as a means to integrate different functional areas, discuss its components and to understand how the impact of team visioning on product development performance may vary depending on the knowledge strategy type. Studying the extent to which this team-related factor affects product development performance, this paper makes several contributions. From a practical point of view, this study focuses on understanding factors that explain product development success. Although this paper is somewhat exploratory in nature, it considers variables that can be influenced by managers; the findings of the study should provide useful recommendations for enhancing product development performance. In terms of theory, an important contribution of this study is the extension of the existing research on team vision, which so far has focused primarily on the organizational level, to a team level. Another major contribution of this study is its examination of how some apparently conflicting demands that are placed on product development teams affect performance. For example, this study supports that product development does not involve a trade-off between exploration and exploitation in such a way that one occurs at the expense of the other. On the contrary, product development efforts simultaneously develop both knowledge activities. In order to do this, this paper, first, discusses the concept of team vision, followed by how a vision may be developed and helps the integration of the different groups and tasks, thus leading to success in product development. Next, it characterizes the product development knowledge strategy and associates it with team vision components. Then, we test the hypothesis on the basis of data generated from a questionnaire survey accomplished in a sample of product developments. Such test can give a snapshot of where differences exist and how team vision can contribute to success in product development. A discussion of the implications, limitations and future research directions concludes our research paper.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This study highlights the importance of the team in product development and examines the relationship between team vision and performance, and the possible moderating role of knowledge strategy. We have tested our hypotheses on data collected from 78 new product developments in a variety of industries. Our findings reveal that the effect of team vision on team effectiveness varies based on the knowledge strategy—defined in terms of punctuated equilibrium in explorative cycle, low ambidexterity and high ambidexterity. Team vision has greater importance in product developments characterized by high ambidexterity, when team effectiveness is used as the outcome. The authors believe this study furthers existing knowledge and can guide future research and practice on this most important issue of team-related factors and the management of product development. Moving forward, future studies that further clarify the role of knowledge strategy on the complex relationship between team-related factors and product development performance are welcome. From a practical point of view, this study implies that product development managers should pay more attention to the development of a common view among team members. Successful product development requires that the components of team vision – clarity, strategy fit and trade-off – be aligned to knowledge strategy.