Synergy is the chemistry between the team members. It is a systemic principle that explains how a team’s collective performance is unpredictable based solely on its member’s individual performances. Therefore, a team’s collective performance can be either better or worse than the sum of its members’ individual performances. The possibility of positive and negative synergies introduces a level of risk that should be taken into account.
Positive synergy can be turned into a negative one if exposed to a wrong element/ habit/ person. As it is wisely said, one fish can spoil the whole pond. In teamwork, the same can happen. Having a person whose values don’t align with the team can cause unnecessary friction leading to devastating effects on performance and productivity. Achieving and sustaining positive synergy is a very complex task, and three criteria determines its probability: selecting the right team members, good leadership and other ongoing people-management processes.
Synergy | how to achieve it
Common values and complementary talents defines the potential for team synergy. Sharing same values can forge strong bonds. More specifically, people who share the values of humility, integrity, trust, and discipline achieve the highest synergies. Humility is the capacity to acknowledge one’s own truth. It makes you realize that you have limitations, and you can always learn from others. Integrity is being the same person in front of people as behind the closed doors. This allows team members to develop trust. Trust leads naturally to loyalty and solidarity. Discipline is the ability to continue to work toward a goal regardless of the situations. Discipline requires perseverance, courage, and resilience.
Sameness is not oneness; uniformity is not unity. Unity, or oneness, is complimentariness, not sameness. Sameness is uncreative and boring. The essence of synergy is to value the differences. These wonderful lines are from the book 7 habits of highly effective people. Everyone needs help and teamwork is based on team members helping each other. Different people contributing different expertise strengthens the team and prepares it to overcome adversity, stay focused, and achieve success more efficiently.
Two good people are better than one good person. Together we can do what no individual can do. This is the power of synergy. – Dele Ola