What is the stuff of synergy?
Synergy is defined as a cooperative interaction among groups or individuals, two or more agents or forces, so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects, so that they create a whole which is greater than its parts.
But how exactly does this happen?
Cultures that value teamwork can be manufactured:
- + Leaders cn communicate a clear expectation that teamwork and collaboration are expected.
- + Leaders can model teamwork in their interaction with each other and the rest of the organization.
- + Organization members can talk about and identify the value of a teamwork culture.
- + Teamwork can be rewarded and recognized.
- + People can discuss important company stories and folklore that emphasize teamwork.
- + Form teams to solve real work issues.
- + Hold department meetings to reviews projects and progress.
- + Build fun and shared occasions into the organization’s agenda.
- + Use ice breakers and teamwork exercises at meetings.
- + Celebrate team successes publicly.
But all these things do not necessarily result in synergy. These things are merely motions, like the slow turning of cogs. Synergy is the stuff of something else.
Synergy is not something to be constructed in a manufactured environment. Synergy is a reaction ignited by something more. It is not the product of conference rooms or sterile laboratories. Rather, it is the stuff of garages and coffee houses, places where individuality and diversity of thought flourish, places of inhibition and freedom of expression, places of engagement and enthusiasm and energy, places of spontaneity.
This is the stuff of synergy: engagement, enthusiasm, and energy. All must be personally engaged in the process. All must express enthusiasm for others input. All must ensure a continuous flow of energy to sustain the iterative cycling of thoughts. Engagement and enthusiasm and energy beget spontaneity, a spark, the spontaneous combustion of synergy.
This is the stuff of synergy. I think.
What do you think? What are the vital incredients of synergy?