Achieving Synergy

Synergy is when resources are optimized through systems management. The optimization through shared power, shared resources, and collaboration for the greater benefit of all can be expressed by the term “synergy” which is derived from the two words “synchronized energy”.

Achieving synergy in a program design requires a different set of skills from those used within a traditional autocratic style of management. Some managers fear losing influence by involving others in a democratic way. That fear is especially strong within a competitive atmosphere in which there is a sense of scarcity.

Likert states in New patterns of Management;

“Another widely held view is that there is a fixed quantity of influence in a company or plant. Consequently, if subordinates are permitted to exercise more influence as to what goes on in the organization, the superiors have correspondingly less. The pie, so to speak is thought to be just so big, and if some people are given more, others must have less.”

Through the application of synergistic or participatory management systems the whole becomes greater than the sum of the parts. “This better management system, while giving others more influence, also gives the high-producing manager more influence. The high-producing managers have actually increased the size of the influence pie by means of the leadership processes which they use.”

The idea of involving many levels of an organization in problem-finding and problem solving activities is basic to both systems and synergy. The systems manager guides the process of interaction among the many specialists in an organization rather than controlling people and resources through strict authority.

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