Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Synergist

I was emailed a challenging video on the weekend.  A TED talk by Louise Fresco about agriculture and the need to science, mechanization etc.   It was particularly interesting since I spent most of this weekend gardening and cooking/canning/freezing what was harvested. 

One output from the weekend was vegetable soup made from squash, tomatoes, basil, jalapeno pepper (just one), green beans, dried beans (the protein in the soup and the ones I dry need to be used early in the year), dandelion, beet and beet tops, carrot and carrot tops (but not too many) and a leek.  Just put through a blender and simmered for hours.  Delicious and 100% from organic home grown produce.
The green tomatoes were simply the ones from the too prolific volunteers that I pulled while weeding and will be made into chutney or baked with mustard.  And yes, the eggplants are small but still perfect.

I did take a break and read a few books.  All great.

One of the books was "The Synergist - how to Lead Your team to Predictable Success" by Les McKeown.   I loved it and will share it with my team.

This is a book one how companies succeed.   It explains some of the dysfunctions and also how to overcome them.  It uses a framework of "work styles" to do this.  There are only 3 styles (which makes it easy to follow):

The Visionary.  Visionaries detest detail.  They love to just paint the picture and assume it is or will get done.  They tend to move in fits and spurts from high productivity/creativity to idleness.  I am mostly visionary (although somehow I missed much of the idleness part of the personality).

The Processor.  Needs all the details.  Brings order out of chaos.  Tends to have high risk aversion. 

The Operator.  These are the doers.  Do it now - ask for forgiveness later.  Can be the bottleneck if they do not learn to delegate.  I am also high on this scale.

These 3 personalities can reach gridlock.  They can also be high conflict.

Then comes the role of the Synergist.  They look out for what is best for the enterprise.  They smooth personalities.  They are the time management person that keeps the focus on the right tasks.

My view is we all have some of each characteristic within us.  The more dominant we are in one, the more awareness we need to have to make sure we do not destroy the team.

The final chapter is the best.  It pulls it all together into how to implement.

The book has a number of QR codes throughout that take you to web pages with other examples.  Cute idea.

Great book.  Worth reading if you are a leader.


At 10:58 AM, Anonymous Justin Park said...

Your discussion around visionary, processor, and operator reminds me of this blog post:

The author introduces "General von Moltke Management Value Matrix." In short, soliders can be categorized along two dimensions: intelligence (smart vs dumb) and drive (active vs lazy).

For example, “Smart Lazies are your command center generals. They are the most valuable because they are the most strategic minded — they figure out the easiest way to accomplish any objective."

At 1:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, I enjoyed reading your blogs and try to follow your reading habits. Do you think you can come up with somekind of scoring system, like from scale of 1 (books sucks, not even paperweight worth) to 10 (absolutely must read and willing to try to your great grandson Josh book). Thanks - Andi


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