The speaker is correct when he states that productivity increases when people work in teams. Teamwork requires cooperation and this enhances the motivation of people than individual competition.
In manufacturing industry, the production of product depends on a number of complex processes. A number of departments dealing with materials, technical services, finance, marketing and production have to interact and only after their cooperative work all the products roll out in time. When the operations involved are highly technical and production processes are complex, interactive cooperation becomes very essential. Even in the research organizations, researchers must collaborate to bring out the product designs. Here cooperative interaction will speed up the work. If individuals are in competition but without cooperation they may work in cross purposes and delay in schedules.
There are a number of benefits when people work in a team rather than individually. When people work as a team, their basic need of belongingness is satisfied. They feel secure and wanted by the members in the team. Good inter personal relations develop. This motivates them to put in more hard work to meet the goals and time schedule set for the team. When sales persons work as a team, each one tries very hard to meet the targets set for the sales of the team. Each one tries to help the other members. But if each one is competing with others in meeting the individual sales targets, the jealousies, back stabbing and other unethical practices will develop which will be counter productive to the organization. Even the best of leaders of industrial and business organizations acknowledge that without the cooperation of the subordinates and workers, they would not have achieved success. Thus, we can see cooperation and not competition as the key to success of organizations.
Cooperation is the corner stone for the teamwork and helps in several ways. It removes the bottlenecks and speeds up the processes. Cooperation also improves the morale of the workers. The inexperienced and trainees learn the work expeditiously since the seniors in the team willingly spend time to train them. Cooperation also involves encouraging others, sharing the burden, giving useful tips, and suggestions to other team members, and also looking after their security. The individuals develop camaraderie and interpersonal will improve. All these result in the increase of productivity.
But there are certain jobs where individual competition contributes to the productivity. Man by nature wants to show off as better than his neighbor. In the competitive world of businesses, one cannot lessen the importance of competition among the sales and persons to improve the sales and profits for the company. When there are incentives given to the individuals for exceeding the targets set to them, they compete to earn more by exceeding the targets. The leader or manager considers the usefulness of the competitive spirit and uses it appropriately. There are intra-team and inter –team competitions to improve the productivity. The leader or the managers should ensure that there is only healthy competition and it does not lead to jealousies and unethical practices. However, it is necessary that the cooperation among persons is maintained for the effectiveness of the organization.
In sum, we can say that the people working in teams where there is cooperation show greater productivity than those working individually and competing with each other.