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    Structure and Culture: Core Competnece in Manaufacturing

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    1. Discuss how an organization should design its structure and culture to obtain a core competence in car manufacturing.

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    1. Discuss how an organization should design its structure and culture to obtain a core competence in car manufacturing.

    The first thing that came to mind when I read this question is Toyota's success.

    So, how does Toyota design its structure and culture to ensure success? Toyota has been coined "the most feared automaker in the industry." In 2005, Toyota's global production hit record numbers, reaching eight million vehicles worldwide. Its plants — such as Ontario's Cambridge facility — are exceeding capacity, while other auto manufacturers are closing plants. Its well-reviewed line of products at the 2006 North American International Auto Show also shows the Japanese auto giant isn't about to lose steam any time soon. This phenomenon has many manufacturers and competitors asking the question: what is Toyota's secret?

    Let's use Toyota's culture and structure as an exemplar to follow, mainly because it has been extremely successful. I will use examples of Toyota throughout for illustrative purposes, which you might want to take out for your final copy.


    "Toyota has developed the Toyota Way which is more conducive to problem solving and more engaging." — Ray Tanguay, President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada

    This organization will have a flat managerial structure, the teamwork mentality, and the concept of flow — a cultural trait that plays down individualism while promoting harmony.

    The culture will have some common traits — such as teamwork and consensus. But in order to be the best at it, there will be shared decision-making, problem solving and high employee engagement.

    Also, an organization should have a strong mission statement. Like TMMC's visual mission statement, it will highlight the company's commitment to its four, equally-weighted stakeholders — its community, its team members (or employees), its customers/suppliers, and its shareholders — illustrating an unconventionally holistic business approach, and one that appears to revolve heavily around the Japanese business practice "omoiyari" or "imagining another's feelings."


    Our car manufacturing design should be highly automated to free up employees to work on higher value added asks — like quality and inspection.
    It will be mixed with an engaged workforce, a deep-rooted company culture, and a strong devotion to its stakeholders.
    The whole system will be about treating everyone with dignity and that allows him or her to grow. It will treat customers well, employees well and suppliers well and in return they expect the same loyalty back. "It challenges the traditional North American values of competition and change."
    The structure will be designed to be stimulating for the employees to ensure that the high expectations of customers are deeply rooted in the manufacturing process.
    For example, every day, as they enter the plant, employees walk past a glowing Lexus sign, and through the doors of a simulated dealership. On display, past the silk plants and sleek sitting area, is the first Lexus that rolled ...

    Solution Summary

    Discusses how an organization should design its structure and culture to obtain a core competence in car manufacturing. References provided.