What we need to know as leaders about synergy


The concept of synergy was firstly described by chemists as they discovered that the separate parts of a molecule had different behaviour and displayed none of the behaviour as the molecule as a whole. The definition of synergy is “the interaction or cooperation of two or more organisations, substances, or other agents to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects.”

At times as leaders we can feel stuck, overwhelmed and stressed. We desire to have the best team that collaborates, communicates and works well together to achieve the best results for the business. If the team collaborates and their contribution to the whole is greater than its parts, it creates synergy, a flow, because when there is synergy within a team, everyone is empowered to perform their best, it makes great difference to the bottom line of the business which means not only the growth of the business, but also great business culture and satisfied employees. With those results everyone will experience empowerment, growth and contribution.

Patrick Lencioni talks about team synergy in his book The Ideal Team Player. He believes team synergy has an extraordinary impact on business results. “If you were to go to some of the best companies in the world and ask them what the impact of their culture is on their bottom line, they would all tell you there is no way we could calculate that. So, what’s the impact? It is huge! Ask any CEO, who truly understands teamwork or culture, and they are going to say it is everything.” Lencioni explains.

So how can synergy be achieved?

First of all must give our employees understanding of their behaviour, as once they understand what drives their behaviour, and the behaviour of their colleagues, then they will be able to communicate in a much more effective way, because communication leads to clarity and clarity leads to team power that makes the team cohesive meaning they can achieve synergy. Everyone will be on the same level feeling the same passion for they outcome and company vision.

When employees have common values, they are on the same level which allows them to speak the same language. Speaking the same language leads to effective communication which makes employees get things done faster, be more efficient as they work towards common goals.

Employees with common interest will enjoy talking about their hobbies such as movies they like to watch, sports they do, etc., which will drive them to enjoy a lunch together, have a laugh, have fun together and even to build outside work relationships.

This is all good and well when you can hire people depending on culture and build your team. If you already have a team and would like to achieve synergy, here are some activities you can do.

Firstly ensure all team members are on the bus. Meaning they are on the ride for the same reasons as you, they are working towards the same goal. You can utilise team building games that focus on effective communication and how to work cohesively. I personally find that games that focus on showing the team that working together they get a much better result than when they do the activity as individuals work really well.

Teach your team how to communicate with each other. There are people that prefer introverts energies and people that prefer extrovert energies. Each energy type get energy differently. There are people that like to get to the point and people that like to have a chat first. Understanding how each employee works, what makes them tick, what are their strengths and weaknesses will help you manage them in a more resourceful way. You can conduct behaviour analysis to get a detail report on each employee and the team as a whole.

Find out more about conducting behaviour analysis and understand your and each of your team members deeply as well as understand the strength and weaknesses of the team as a whole.