A and B team mentality threatens competitiveness in industry
By: CEO Henrik Holvad, RIVAL
The danger of splitting white-collar and blue-collar workers into an A team and a B team is that we cannot attract skilled production staff. And that, in turn, threatens our competitiveness, which is often based on a high level of professional competency.
We are all familiar with the classic image of the factory gates and the silent, empty yard. Then the factory whistle sounds and a huge flock of men dressed in overalls suddenly appears – the working day is over and they’re on their way home. Now, let’s imagine the scene in front of the head office of one of the major national banks for instance. It’s five o'clock in the afternoon. The whistle sounds, and out come huge numbers of men and women dressed in tailor-made suits, all clutching a briefcase. Doesn’t quite work, does it?
New generations of machinists are not willing to put up with what they see as a disturbing trend. They are individualists who do not view themselves as workers, but as specialised and highly qualified craftsmen who want a challenging job and a say in the work they do. Just like everyone else in society. And that’s what enables a company like ours to compete with similar production companies abroad – the adaptability, creativity, expertise and high level of professional competence of our employees. If we are to make the idea of working in industrial production attractive, which is essential if we want to keep up, then we have to create an atmosphere that makes our employees feel valued. Nowadays, we expect them to assume responsibility – to do so, we need to afford them the same level of freedom as others within the company.