Everyone knows that it’s a good thing to have specialists on your team. Not only do these people have a lot of knowledge within a specific area, they also are very efficient on the job. They deliver the best quality of work in the least amount of time within their specialism. That’s a fact.
In reality every problem needs a multi-disciplined approach. There are the end users expectations, the managers point of view, the need for training, for marketing and internal communication, the accounting department and sales people, etc.
It is impossible to create a solution that meets all demands with a team skilled only in specialists knowledge. Creating any solution needs a team capable of collaboration, capable of seeing each others point of view and finding a common, workable approach to the problem. A team with people without these abilities actually isn’t a team. It is a group of people in which each person is very good and efficient in doing his thing, but overall progress is slow and quality is mediocre at best.
When creating the project team it is important to place people with interpersonal communication skills in key positions. Sometimes this can be quite difficult because both supplier and customer might have different opinions about the team’s composition.
On a higher level, when looking at the project’s approach, it might become even more difficult to get approval for a process in which collaboration is placed above specialism. That’s when the knowledge of lean principles and the project’s manager people skills comes into play!