This post is the 9th in a series of posts where I've been studying the book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey from a Christian entrepreneur’s perspective, and I'm summarizing and Biblically backing up each of the seven habits. Scroll to the end of this article for links to the entire series.
Welcome back to my series that summarizes and gives a Biblical perspective to each of the seven habits laid out in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey.
We now come to a habit that all the previous habits you’ve learned have prepared you for: synergizing.
Synergy means a situation where the contributions of many add up to a total that exceeds the combined contributions of the individuals. One plus one can equal three or more.
Synergy in Entrepreneurship
At the time of writing this blog post, I have two main companies I'm building. One is a branding agency for charter schools. We manage charter school brands. They pay us a monthly retainer to handle all of their branding needs. My other company is a virtual assistant staffing agency. We find VAs in Latin America (primarily Venezuela) to work for companies in the U.S.
For a few years, I was managing both companies separately. I'd focus on one for a bit, then I'd focus on the other. I had different partners, employees, clients, and softwares. Basically, I lived two lives: one as the owner of a branding agency and one as the owner of a staffing agency.
One day, one of the schools we manage was complaining about their staffing issues, particularly with admin and support tasks. I didn't want to mix both of my businesses, but I couldn't resist the temptation to tell my client that I have another company that could help them with their staffing issues.
Within 3 months of that conversation, I had virtual assistants working at my client's schools. I was making money from one single client through both of my companies that used to be completely isolated from each other, but because of the synergy I discovered, now we're all collaborating to service my clients at a whole new level.
That's how synergy works.
We all have the ability to find synergies in our business relationships. In fact, I believe that God wants us to create synergistic relationships throughout our entire entrepreneurial journey. This isn't just a concept that Mr. Covey came up with it on his own, he thought of it because this is how God designed us to think.
What does the bible say about synergy?
So, what does God have to say about Mr. Covey's 6th habit of synergy and synergistic relationships?
The concept of synergy, or the idea that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, is not explicitly mentioned in the Bible. However, there are many biblical passages that speak to the value of cooperation, teamwork, and unity, which are essential components of creating synergistic tasks or relationships.
One famous example of the importance of synergy can be found in Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, which states:
"Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken."
This passage emphasizes the power of working together, and the benefits that can come from supporting and relying on one another.
Similarly, the apostle Paul frequently emphasized the importance of unity and collaboration in his letters to early Christian communities. For example, in 1 Corinthians 12:12-27, Paul uses the metaphor of a body to describe the interdependence and cooperation that should exist within a community of believers:
"Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ... If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it."
This passage emphasizes the importance of every member of a community working together to achieve a common goal, and the value of supporting and caring for one another in the process.
In summary, while the Bible does not explicitly use the term "synergy," it emphasizes the importance of working together, supporting one another, and collaborating to achieve common goals. These values are essential components of creating synergistic tasks or relationships in Kingdom-driven businesses.
How to Implement Synergy in Business
So how can you implement this principle in your own business interactions?
When building your team, for example, each employee sees the world differently and we each have our own particular strengths. You can leverage the power of synergy by being open with others, valuing these differences, and tapping into each person's unique ability to move a growth opportunity forward.
And in agencies, when account managers and clients truly synergize, they listen to each other, understand each other's roles in the relationship and use the contributions of others as a springboard to create something great. When you value synergy, everyone is on the same side, trying to tackle a shared challenge, not fighting each other over budgets and deadlines.
As a Godpreneur, the path to synergizing starts with seeing your interactions with others as an adventure that God partners with you to go on. The outcome of that adventure may not be what you planned in your head, but God is directing the steps and your faith will help you embrace it with complete openness.
Imagine if Christian entrepreneurs worldwide developed a significant degree of self-confidence, (as well as the Biblical conviction) that the combined contribution of each party can lead to something great, even if the entrepreneurial journey to get there seems a bit chaotic.
Let's all make a list of the people we find it difficult to discuss things with and think about their views. If we were more confident and open-minded, do we think we could find synergies between our perspective and theirs?
In the next post, we will close out with the 7th and final habit that will set us up for the rest of our business lives: sharpening the saw.
Read the Whole Series: A Christian Entrepreneur's Perspective on The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
The 7 Habits: Entrepreneurs Sharpen the Saw
I pray you enjoy the series as much as I enjoyed creating it!