The [S]ynergist

Mar 3, 2011

The [S]ynergist is the ‘missing link’ that binds together the triangle of the other three management styles, and cements the organization in Predictable Success.

Without the Synergist the organization cannot break through Whitewater to Predictable Success.

The Synergist shares with the Visionary a long-term vision for the organization: has his or her heart in the business, and more than anything else wants the business to survive and grow over the years.

But uniquely (and very differently from the V) the Synergist also shares with the Processor a commitment to, and a recognition of, the need for processes and systems in the long-term.

The Synergist acts as a translator between the V and the P. As a result, the Synergist is really the person who makes the communications work between the V and the P. (As we’ll see later in this series, V‘s and P‘s have so little in common that in fact they find communication very difficult.) The S is the individual who acts as translator between these two management styles, and who pulls the whole management group together.

Where does the Synergist come from? Although it doesn’t always happen this way, the Synergist best arises as a natural growth of the V role. At best the organization in Whitewater will have a founder/owner who, while strongly Visionary, also realizes that they personally need to drop some of their commitment to effectiveness in the short term and add commitment to efficiency over the long term.

This successful transition from founder/owner to a Predictable Success CEO is a difficult transition, but it can be done. It involves the V stepping back somewhat, getting less involved with the micro-details of running the business – they become more of a mentor and a coach than a micro-manager.

The Synergist role is much more ‘people focused’ than the V role. Whereas an out-and-out V can often be brusque and lack ‘people skills’, the Synergist is the person who makes the team come together and realize they need each other if the business is to grow successfully.

While the best transition is for the founder/owner to add the S style to his or her role, an alternative that often happens is to have an Synergist brought into the senior management team.