Why is cross-functional teamwork so important?
Why is cross-functional teamwork so important?
Description: Introducing cross-functional teamwork can not only help to promote a sense of cohesion across your business but also optimise your efforts Keywords: crm training courses, human factors, cross-functional teamwork short workshops.
Have you ever felt like your organisation works in silos with each department working on their own tasks, and not considering other teams’ requirements. things?
Does it seem as if one of your teams does not fully understand the needs and challenges of another team, and vice versa?
Obviously, each department will have their own function but they should all be working towards the same goal – otherwise you will find that your resources are spread too thinly and this will have a negative impact on your business. Introducing cross-functional teamwork can not only help to promote a sense of cohesion across your business but also optimise your efforts to achieve all of your goals faster with less waste. Read on to discover more about cross-functional teamwork and how it could benefit your business:
What is cross-functional teamwork?
Cross-functional teamworking, is how different teams and departments work together, and this can often be the weak link within an organisation. Individual teams or departments may be working effectively, but your organisation’s efficiency and profitability will be greatly diminished if:
The channels and links that enable communication and collaboration between teams and departments are weak, non-existent or not used effectively.
- There is lack of mutual understanding and appreciation of the needs and requirements of other teams and departments.
- Your teams do not understand and appreciate the need for effective cross-functional teamworking.
Why do we need cross-functional teamworking?
If your company is not cross-functional then this can be frustrating for both your own personnel and, perhaps more importantly, for your customers. Whatever your organisation is, its sole purpose is to serve the customer – and so all departments should work together to provide a comprehensive and positive customer experience.
Cross-functional teamworking helps with this by encouraging each team to communicate effectively with other teams. Bringing teams together in this way can also help with problem solving and lead to smarter decision making. Instead of teams operating independently, they will collaborate to make optimal use of time and resources, making more of an effort to improve customer satisfaction while also helping to meet your organisation goals.
Why should you build cross-functional teams?
Central to cross-functional teamworking is a model of corporate effectiveness which identifies management and worker inputs to the workplace and identifies strategies which reduce the probability of inefficient behaviour. The model applies the principle of Threat and Error Management to the corporate level of operations.
What are the key aspects of cross-functional teamworking?
- Introducing cross-functional teamworking. When developing cross-functional teamworking the key areas on which to focus are on linking attitudes to performance, using goal-setting and other behavioural modification approaches to develop positive change, and also shaping attitudes in order to sustain workplace change.
- Encourage a collaborative culture. Bringing together the different teams within your business to create cross-functional teamworking means you will have access to a collective knowledge base made up of people with different backgrounds and skills which can be harnessed to drive your business forwards.
- Encourage continuous learning. Bringing people from different areas of the business together means there will no doubt be some learning and development going on, which will help with both worker satisfaction and autonomy.
- Learn new tools. Coming together with other teams, and seeing how they do things differently is a great way to discover what tools everyone is using and whether you could benefit from using those tools as well.
- Exercise communication skills. Communication can make or break corporate effectiveness – and it is not just about listening. You need to think about agreed upon communication channels, constructive feedback and have an understanding of human diversity.
- Honing management skills. Placing people together and expecting them to gel immediately is not wise, especially when you take human factors into account. Managing cross-functional teams will really put your management skills to the test, and is something you definitely need to prepare for.
- Practising conflict resolution. There are always conflicts within team, especially cross-functional ones. Conflicts can arise from differences in educational backgrounds and training, differences in work processes and tools used, and also a lack of understanding of the purpose of their role. Once you have recognised the conflict though, you can work together to overcome it.
- Mixes things up a bit. Cross-functional teamworking will shake up your work routine a little, providing a different perspective on the operation. It can be a good way to revitalise people in your company as well, giving them a chance to break free from their mental roadblocks and daily habits as well.
- Spark innovation. Having different team members mix with people from other teams can be a great way to spark innovation by showing them how to think a little differently. Grouping new people together will help them to think outside of the box.
Here at ITS Academy you can not only learn more about cross-functional teams but what benefits they can bring to your organisation as well. In addition, we offer a number of short workshops covering a wide range of subjects, so whatever type of business you are in, we can help you to maximise your profits by improving teamwork and minimising error. Contact us for more information, or to discuss how we might support you.
Fuel contamination caused two emergency landings, one with two failed engines.
Fuel contaminated with diesel exhaust fluid forced two air ambulances to make emergency landings in May. Both aircraft have been declared total losses.
On May 9, both twinjets departed Air Trek’s Punta Gorda base and flew to Naples, Florida, where medical technicians, patients, and patients’ family members boarded. AOPA reported that one Citation was headed to Niagara Falls, New York, but experienced an engine flameout north of Savannah, Georgia. It then lost its second engine but landed safely in Savannah. The other Citation was bound for Chicago when it experienced an engine failure, and landed safely in Louisville, Kentucky. In all, 13 occupants escaped without injury, said Dana Carr, Air Trek’s director of operations.
The FAA determined that the two aircraft received fuel that had been contaminated with diesel exhaust fluid, or DEF, which had been added erroneously to the fuel supply in a fuel truck in Punta Gorda. DEF is a urea-based chemical that reduces diesel-engine emissions. It is not intended for use in aircraft, and when added to jet fuel, can trigger chemical reactions leading to the formation of crystals that can plug fuel filters and damage other engine components.
The incidents followed occurrences at other airports in 2018 and 2017 that had triggered FAA warnings and prompted intensive industry review of aircraft-fueling practices and personnel training.
In an Aug. 7 phone interview, Carr expressed Air Trek’s pride in the performance of the two fight crews. “They did an admirable job,” he said, noting that one of the pilots was, fortuitously, also rated in gliders.
DEF a bad fit for airports
The risk of jet fuel being contaminated by diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) is “unacceptably high,” and the Environmental Protection Agency should exempt airport vehicles from emissions requirements mandating the use of DEF “in non-road, on-airport ground support equipment and vehicles,” said AOPA and 17 other aviation organizations in an Aug. 7 letter to the administrators of the EPA and the FAA. Such an exemption was recommended in an industry-led working group’s report that addressed immediate actions that could be taken to reduce the DEF risk. While more permanent solutions, such as the complete removal of DEF from airports, are under study, the industry is voluntarily implementing the report’s other recommendations, including “education, storage, labeling, handling procedures, and limiting DEF inventory,” the letter said.
In addition to the aviation groups signing the letter to the FAA and EPA, the National Transportation Safety Board has also expressed concern about the issue, sending a safety alert in July that includes suggestions to help prevent future incidents. And in August , the Diesel Technology Forum, a non-profit group that aims to raise awareness about the importance of diesel engines, fuel and technology, is backing the aviation industry’s stance on DEF contamination.
In an Aug. 6 press release, the Diesel Technology Forum wrote, “We recommend that FBO’s follow the NTSB safety bulletin, and work with diesel engine and equipment dealers and their fuel suppliers to understand the proper use and storage of DEF. FBOs should also institute ongoing training, labeling and storage practices to help ensure aviation safety. The work done by the Aircraft Diesel Exhaust Fluid Working Group and their report in June 2019 has contributed a substantial understanding to the issue, and offers strong short- and long-term recommendations.”
The National Transportation Safety Board’s preliminary report on the double engine failure experienced by the aircraft that diverted to Savannah gives an account of a crisis aloft that unfolded in stages as the jet gradually lost power:
“According to the pilots, about 1 hour and 20 minutes into the flight from APF to IAG, while cruising at 35,000 ft mean sea level (msl), the pilot-in-command was trying to set the N1 speed around 103 [percent], but moments after adjusting power, the N1 speed would decrease. Following a few repeated occurrences of the N1 speed decreasing in this manner, all the engine gauges ‘read regular,’ then the left engine began to ‘spool down very slowly.’ After unsuccessfully attempting to recover engine power, the crew requested a lower altitude from air traffic control and began a descent with the left engine at idle power. The pilot-in-command then noticed that the left engine displayed no oil pressure and subsequently shut it down.
“Several minutes passed as the airplane descended with the right engine at 65 [percent] fan speed, and while preparing to perform a single-engine approach into SAV, about 8,000 ft msl, the right engine became unresponsive and then began ‘spooling down.’ The pilot-in-command declared an emergency and the flight crew performed a straight-in approach to runway 19. The airplane landed without incident and was towed to the ramp,” the report states.
The preliminary NTSB report revealed that “several days after the incident, the lineman realized that he had inadvertently combined a 5-gallon (fuel system icing inhibitor) bucket and a 2.5-gallon diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) container instead of two partially-empty containers of FSII.”
B738 at Moscow overran runway on take-off, August 5th, 2019
A S7 Airlines Boeing 737-800, registration VQ-BKV performing flight S7-263 from Moscow Domodedovo (Russia) to Simferopol (Ukraine), departed Domodedovo’s runway 32L but overran the end of the runway before the aircraft became airborne. The aircraft continued the flight for a landing on Simferopol’s runway 19 without further incident about 2:10 hours after departure.
A later runway inspection found glass debris at the runway end and detected five damaged runway end lights. A review showed 5 aircraft had taken off between the previous and current runway inspection, amongst them VQ-BKV. An inspection of the aircraft after landing in Simferopol showed three tyres had been damaged, the landing gear had glass embedded.
The occurrence aircraft remained on the ground for about 19 hours, then departed for the return flight.
One Russian Aviation Source reported the crew computed take-off performance using a take-off weight 15 tons below the real weight.
Another Russian Aviation Source claimed the crew inadvertently entered Zero Fuel Weight instead of Take-off Weight.
Surveillance Video of the take-off:Read More
Latest version of UK CAA CAP 737
Use this link to obtain the latest version of the UK CAA Human Factors Handbook – CAP 737Read More
A321neo has a fault that could cause the nose to pitch up
Operators of the Airbus A321neo have been issued with an airworthiness directive by the European Aviation and Space Agency (EASA) alerting it to a problem that could cause the nose to pitch up.
According to EASA Airworthiness Directive 2019-0171, the behaviour of the Elevator Aileron Computer unit installed on A321neo can cause ‘excessive pitch attitude’ that could result in ‘reduced control of the aeroplane’.
The fault is most likely to occur on the final approach phase, particularly if a ‘hard manoeuvre’ is attempted, such as a large correction to the aircraft’s angle of attack (AoA).
The temporary revision instructs airlines not to load their A321neos with a centre of gravity (CoG) as far rearward as currently permitted so the weight is not towards the rear of the aircraft and the directive dictates Airlines must change the Aircraft Flight Manuals accordingly.
Whilst seemingly not as serious as the fault with the Boeing 737 Max aircraft that resulted in two fatal accidents, the news will come as a blow to Airbus that has seen orders for its single-aisle aircraft shoot up as confidence in the 737 Max drops.
As a result, Airbus has stressed that the fault with the ELAC unit can only occur “in certain and remote conditions and in combination with specific commanded manoeuvres”.
Airbus expects to have its flight control system fine-tuned and a permanent solution to the problem in place by Q3 2020.
Unlike the Boeing 737 Max, A321neo’s will continue to be allowed to fly.
Accident: Sky Express AT42, Jul 12th 2019, runway excursion on backtrack and roll back
| A Sky Express Avions de Transport Regional ATR-42-500, registration SX-FOR performing flight GQ-405 from Naxos to Athens (Greece) with 46 passengers and 3 crew, was backtracking runway 36 for departure at about 17:20L (14:20Z) when the aircraft went off the paved surface of the runway and came to a stop with the main gear in a ditch, the tail on the ground, the lower fuselage below propellers on the runway edge and the nose gear on the runway surface. There were no injuries, the aircraft sustained substantial damage.|
Passengers on previous flights reported it was common to backtrack the runway, line up for departure and then roll back using back power (propellers in beta) to get as much runway available for takeoff as possible.
Naxos’ runway 18/36 is officially 900 meters/2950 feet long. The Hellenic AIP reports TODA, TORA, ASDA and LDA all at 900 meters.
LGNX 121550Z 35007KT CAVOK 26/16 Q1011=
LGNX 121450Z 36011KT CAVOK 27/15 Q1011=
LGNX 121350Z 35011G21KT CAVOK 27/14 Q1011=
LGNX 121250Z 35010G20KT CAVOK 27/14 Q1011=
LGNX 120950Z 01012KT CAVOK 26/16 Q1011=
LGNX 120850Z 01011KT 9999 FEW025 25/15 Q1011=
FAA Recommends Increased Braking Performance Margins
Recent data indicates that applying a 15 percent safety margin to calculate wet runway stopping distance, as recommended by previous guidance, may be inadequate in certain conditions to prevent a runway excursion, according to a new safety alert for pilots (SAFO 19003). This new alert replaces the guidance in previous SAFO 15009.
“Several recent runway-landing incidents/accidents have raised concerns with wet runway stopping performance assumptions,” according to this new alert. “Analysis of the stopping data from these incidents/accidents indicates the braking coefficient of friction in each case was significantly lower than expected for a wet runway.” These mishaps occurred on both grooved and un-grooved runways.
Takeoff and Landing Performance Assessment (Talpa) procedures implemented by the FAA on Oct. 1, 2016, added new insight as to how flight crews can evaluate runway braking performance before landing. Talpa defines a “wet runway” as damp to 1/8-inch depth or less of water, while a “contaminated runway” is a surface covered with “greater than 1/8-inch of water.”
The FAA recommends that airports report “wet” conditions, but that is not required. Further, an airport may not be able to generate an accurate report from sudden rain showers that result in water on the runway more than 1/8 of an inch in depth (“contaminated”). The alert concludes that because “Rainfall intensity may be the only indication available to the pilot that the water depth present on the runway may be excessive, it is recommended that pilots use landing performance data associated with medium to poor braking.” However, the FAA notes that using all available data to prevent a contaminated runway excursion is moot when the landings involve delayed touchdowns, improper application of deceleration devices and landing with a tailwind.
Accident: Jun 27th 2019, Angara AN24 engine failure, veered off runway & collided building
| An Angara Airlines Antonov AN-24, registration RA-47366 performing flight 2G-200 from Ulan-Ude to Nizhneangarsk (Russia) with 43 passengers and 4 crew on board, was on approach to Nizhneangarsk when the left hand engine failed. The aircraft landed on Nizhneangarsk’s runway 22 in the touch down zone at 10:24L (02:24Z) following a stable approach, rolled out on the center line for some distance, then veered right off the runway, went over soft ground and impacted a building, a fire broke out. The captain and flight engineer were killed in the accident, 44 people were able to evacuate or were rescued, 7 people were injured, 37 people remained uninjured including first officer and flight attendant. The aircraft was destroyed.|
Russia’s Ministry Emergency Ministry reported emergency services received the emergency call at about 10:30L after the aircraft broke through a fence catching fire and collided with sewage treatment plants. 44 people were rescued, 7 of them were injured. Two people on board have been killed. A fire on board of the aircraft was quickly extinguished by emergency services. (Editorial note: these numbers suggest, in combination with the official passenger and crew count by the airline, one person is still missing).
The airline reported RA-47366 performing flight 2G-200 from Ulan-Ude to Nizhneangarsk made an emergency landing at Nizhneangarsk, veered off the runway and collided with ground infrastructure. As result of the collision a fire occurred. All 43 passengers were promptly evacuated. The captain and flight engineer were killed, the first officer and the flight attendant escaped uninjured. The captain had 34 years of experience and 15,702 hours total, the first officer 20 years of experience and 6,315 hours total, the flight engineer 35 years of experience and 13,728 hours. The Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC/MAK) have opened an investigation.
Rosaviatsia reported the crew declared “Distress” about 30km (16nm) from the airport reporting the failure of the left hand engine. Emergency services took their stand by positions for the arrival. On landing the aircraft went off the runway, collided with technical structures of the airport and caught fire. All passengers are alive, the captain and flight engineer died in the accident.
Venezolana B732, uncontained engine failure May 30th 2019
A Venezolana Boeing 737-200, registration YV502T performing flight VNE-1303 from Port of Spain (Trinidad and Tobago) to Caracas (Venezuela) with 79 people on board, was climbing out of Port of Spain when the left hand engine (JT8D) failed emitting a loud bang. The crew stopped the climb and returned to Port of Spain for a safe landing about 23 minutes after departure.
A post flight inspection revealed the engine had suffered an uncontained failure ejecting debris radially downwards. The fuselage also received minor damage as result of the engine failure.
Air safety institute warns about jet fuel contamination
The AOPA Air Safety Institute has issued an ASI Safety Notice calling pilots’ attention to the problem of jet fuel being contaminated with diesel exhaust fluid, which is not approved for use in aircraft and has caused engine failure or significant damage to aircraft engines and fuel systems in several instances.
The safety notice posted on the Air Safety Institute and AOPA websites was prompted by a May 9 fuel-contamination incident that caused two Cessna Citation jets that received tainted fuel in Punta Gorda, Florida, to experience in-flight failures-in one case of both engines, and in the other instance, of one of two engines. Both aircraft landed safely.
Diesel exhaust fluid, or DEF, is not intended for use in aircraft but is used to reduce emissions in diesel engines such as those in ground vehicles. When added to jet fuel, DEF can trigger reactions including the formation of crystals that can plug fuel filters and damage engine components.
In a letter to Acting FAA Administrator Daniel K. Elwell, AOPA President Mark Baker noted that the May 9 incident was the third in the last 18 months in which DEF was mistakenly added to aircraft fuel in separate locations, presumably in place of icing-inhibitor fluid. Both fluids are clear and colourless.
“We believed the first contamination event in November 2017 to be a unique situation and unlikely to reoccur. Unfortunately, a second occurred in August 2018,” Baker wrote, adding that the incidents led to the creation of an industry working group “to study factors surrounding these events, develop mitigation strategies, and recommend both short and long-term actions for industry and the FAA to implement.”
The ASI Safety Notice urges pilots to inquire if your fuel providers use DEF in ground equipment and about procedures to confirm that only the correct additives are used for jet fuel. Procedures should include separate storage, clear labelling, confirmation of correct additives at the time of insertion, and personnel training.
Noting that there are no known pre-flight procedures pilots can use to identify the presence of DEF in jet fuel, the notice raises pilots’ awareness that if engine failure occurs due to turbine flameout, DEF contamination is a possible cause. “Follow emergency checklist procedures for engine failure and realize if DEF contamination is the cause, successful restart is unlikely,” it cautions, noting that the loss of remaining engines is likely.
If DEF contamination is suspected, pilots should notify the fixed-base operator where fuel was obtained as soon as possible, and document and report the incident to the local FAA office immediately.
Baker’s letter said he expected the industry working group to issue its recommendations shortly. “Any assistance the FAA can provide to work with industry and quickly implement the mitigation strategies identified in the report will be appreciated,” he wrote to Elwell.
Photo by Mike FizerRead More