• Peter Bouloukos

Synergy. Mangement. Going Green.


Synergy is the creation of a whole that is greater than the simple sum of its parts. The term synergy comes from the Attic Greek word συνεργία synergia (confer Koine Greek: συνέργεια synergeia) from synergos, συνεργός, meaning "working together." The Telecom Reform Act of 1996 connected the world via fiber-optic cable. This in-part was the impetus behind a massive change from "Industrial Aged Management" to a "Knowledge Aged" paradigm placing a strong value on human capital and the unique contributions of the individual to the team. "Top-down" management heirarchy's based on "command and control" essentially died with the expanse of the internet. Today people are more "connected" and aware than ever sharing knowledge, ideas, information and news with a point & click. The world is more about "release" than "control." Understanding this is critical when developing complimentary teams and encouraging a synergetic workplace. Over the past decade many individuals and businesses alike have become "more green." Increasing efficiency, reducing chemical usage, decreasing carbon footprints, doing the right things, at the right times, for the right reasons. Certainly plenty of great reasons exist to "Go Green!" We all carry and share personal as well as collective motiations to "do" something more on a "Green" front. Growing concers over global warming, drought, famine and a heightened awareness of the connection between Earth and human health and wellness. Synergy requires an effort by all for "one" like-minded cause. Management in business is an effort should constantly strive to share "one vision" and helping people see this from within. We truly must be "stewards" for the planets natural resources and it can make both "dollars" and obvious "sense" at work and in-life. With this, many businesses have recently been more aggressive about embracing green building, renewal, recycling and other operational practices because it generates "cold hard cash." The rising prices of oil over the past fifteen years has been a huge wake-up call for corporate America. Fiscal motivations may not be the "best" reasons to embrace Eco-friendly ideals and practices, but they definitely have proved to be a strong catalyst for the business world to at very least take notice.

So maybe "money" as an influence propelled leaders to activate "feel good" plans sitting on the sidelines for years. The "bottom-line" may have been the impetus needed to inspire new solutions, inventions and discussions that may have never been explored. Something more enlightening and definitely more abstract is "magic" appearing on the bottom-line when employee's feel valued, respected and loved in a synergistic environment. Don't we commonly believe this type of work environment is the best? Well planet Earth ironically feels the same! Now I am not telling anyone not to shower or to start wearing patchouli oil. Don't go hug a tree unless you want to, but when organizations start listening to new ideas involving the "whole" it creates synergy in the workplace and "synergy" is what is vital on planet Earth. Saving Earth may just be what develops leadership and "buy-in" from employees as well as the community. Interesting? Organizations begin by assessing where they have the biggest areas of opportunity for improvement, sorting through lofty goals as well as some of the lowest hanging fruits to be immediately knocked out. You don't have to have big meetings or speeches to get the ball rolling either. Send employee emails asking for for input and challenging them to think big. Use ideas from everyone! Follow this up by assembling complimentary teams based off of individual talents, input and ideals. Direct the teams to hash out priorities, plans of attack and time tables for achievement. Here are some fundamental ideas that save money and "feel great" at the end of the day:

  • Site- and climate-appropriate landscaping that decreases watering and chemical requirements, while reducing storm-water run-off.

  • Light-fixture and bulb choices that reduce related electrical usage — without sacrificing light quality.

  • Adjustments in roofing and parking-lot material color (from dark to light) to reduce heat absorption.

  • Building materials and design features that substantially increase energy efficiency and reduce fossil-fuel usage.

  • Strategic fresh-water conservation efforts, including the recycling of water for use in toilets.

  • Recycling programs

  • Local sourcing of products and services.

There are many other eco-friendly changes operationally specific. You might only use paper containing 30 percent post-consumer recycled material processed "chlorine free." On a food front, organic-local-free range options exist people understand and pay for. Synergy is something we all need to think about in terms of management, team building and operational excellence. We all have more work to do - individuals and companies. Cleaner air, soil and water support healthier people and a better way of life. It also supports a healthier more stable planet Earth something all of us should get behind and better understand.


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