When does 1+1 not equal 2? When you Synergize! Today we jump into Habit 6 from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. Simply defined, synergy means that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It is not merely compromising, it is reaching a higher level of communication and results. This habit is a culmination of the previous habits as we strive to reach our full potential.

The essence of synergy is to value differences. Understand that you don’t have all the answers, and open yourself up to creative cooperation. Many of us, Dan included, tend to hold firm to our beliefs in how a situation should be handled, problem solved, etc. When someone presents an alternative we sometimes to get defensive of our position, and block ourselves off from understanding a potential better path forward. We may compromise and accept “defeat” in some areas, but are we are not working in cooperation to find a new, better alternative. All parties involved must be open to this synergy and communication for it to work.

Synergy requires trust and cooperation. It also requires a strong foundation inside ourselves to be open to other peoples ideas and strategies. Whe trust and cooperation are low you end up in Win/Lose or Lose/Win situation. When trust and cooperation are “medium” you end up with respectful conversations, etc. and compromise. When trust and cooperation are high that is when you can achieve Win/Win results through synergy.

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