Trust, Cooperation, and Communication

“Synergy” is a buzzword. When synergy has been created, it is when the “whole has become greater than the sum of the parts.” This is obviously something organizations strive to accomplish. To the degree that the individual employees and the various units of the organization work together in a manner that creates a greater positive whole than what the sum of all these parts could possibly accomplish, to that same degree the organization will perform at at much higher level; it will compete much more effectively and powerfully against its industry rivals.

However, to achieve “synergy” within the organization, there needs to be an extraordinary level of positive communication among the employees and the various units of the organization. And Covey says that high levels of positive communication occur only as “trust” AND “cooperation” rise. Indeed, Covey says that a high level of positive communication is a function of a high level of trust combined with a high level of cooperation.

1) Do you believe this? Why?

2) Many organizations possess a culture full of “competition” between employees for recognition, jobs, promotion, higher pay, etc., and between various units for resources and priority. In a competitive culture, what happens to trust? What happens to cooperation?

3) Can an organization COMPETE with its industry rivals to the highest degree of success if its employees and units COMPETE within it?

4) What do you prosper under the most, competition or cooperation? What brings out your best performance? Why?

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