The most effective design teams generally involve a clearly delineated group of individuals who work full time on the specified project from its beginning until market introduction. This article focuses on issues arising in using teams in a product design process. It provides special coverage on alternative roles for specialists, such as materials engineers or scientists, whose expertise is essential to the success of the project. The article discusses the types of teams exhibiting certain characteristics in the sales, accounting, and research departments and from the factory floor to the executive suite. The special characteristics of cross-functional development teams are discussed. The article reviews the staffing of a development team, including team leader, team members, and suppliers on the team. It describes the considerations for organizing a development team, and the role of development team specialists on balancing team needs.
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