Appreciating Specialization: Nurturing Talent in the Division of Labor

Appreciating Specialization: Nurturing Talent in the Division of Labor

Mambo G. Mupepi (Grand Valley State University, USA) and Francis Boachie-Mensah (University of Cape Coast, Ghana)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1961-4.ch001
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The central precept of this chapter is to leverage the division of labor to create a talented workforce. The divided labor can be appreciated to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to develop the talent useful to progress the job. Specialization arises in many situations such as when the experts share their experience, enabling the novice to constantly learn to improve systems thinking and personal mastery. It can also happen as a result of planned on-the-job training. Innovation can happen when individuals segment their knowledge about the job and increase their skillfulness to champion productivity. Technical know-how too can be described as highly structured skill-sets acquired from years of continuous learning and improvement leading to proficiency. Expertise can also refer to innovative and systems thinking, espousing the development of techniques and methods leading to increased productivity. A case study is deployed to understand how competencies were developed and implemented successfully in an enterprise. Appreciative Inquiry change management savoir-faire was deployed to pin-point at what gave life to the business. This information was used to promote the talent needed to boost output in the value creation system.
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The discussion in this chapter is about appreciating knowledge, skills, and technology, in the division of labor to create specialists who can provide answers to the economic question of how to advance productivity. They can enable the divided labor to excel in their jobs and become talented in many aspects of the business. In a free market economy, the best producers are those that are able to supply goods and services valued by the consumers all the time. Adam Smith (1723-1790) envisioned a world of specialists native to the division of labor, who produce goods sold at greater profit margins. The division of labor enables economies of scale that give the producer superiority in the production of the goods in demand. The competitive advantage can be created in many ways. For example, a company can make appropriate-in-technology investment, acquiring the tools, equipment and know-how to advance productivity. It can also invest in its people, allowing them to specialize in all aspects of doing the job. The company can have all the gadgets, tools and equipment, but people will make the difference. The discourse presented indicates that the edge can also be created by the business, using the knowledge and skills of the stakeholder specialists. Wealth can be realized by controlling costs and addressing taxation, all things being equal.

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