With more than 300,000 employees worldwide, it's no easy task for General Electric (NYSE:GE) to manage its operations. But if you've ever spoken with a General Electric employee before, you'd get the impression that the company operates with a high level of collaboration and openness that isn't typical for a company its size. In other words, General Electric uses its size to its advantage to openly share information so that it can get smarter. The hope is that this level of collaboration and sharing of information across borders and divisions will accelerate General Electric's research and development process.

In a recent interview with The Motley Fool, Christine Furstoss, who heads up General Electric's advanced manufacturing research division, made it clear that relentless improvement is a core value of the company's enduring culture. According to Furstoss, for General Electric to keep growing, it's going to have to become more entrepreneurial in spirit and seek out opportunities in new ways.

In the following video, filmed at the Inside 3-D Printing Conference in New York City, 3-D printing specialist Steve Heller asks Furstoss how a company with General Electric's size can effectively manage its operations.

Steve Heller has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of General Electric Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.