In their 30-year business experience the authors faced a continuous need to develop people. They found that managers and training professionals encountered difficulties in efforts to critically examine performance improvement opportunities and in exploring the ingredients of individual performance.
Traditional approaches such as skills training, even when based on the findings of job analyses and job knowledge surveys, often failed to significantly affect individual performance. Facing questions such as "why do competent and motivated managers sometimes fail to achieve certain realistic and well-planned objectives?" the authors felt the need for a more comprehensive approach to human resource development (HRD). Such an approach would include a set of factors that, seen as related to spirituality in the workplace, traditionally were largely ignored. These were personal factors, such as beliefs and self-image, which did not allow some people to utilize new skills taught at traditional training courses.
Following academic and field research the authors developed a new HRD model for which they coined the term Synolic from the Greek "synolos," meaning complete or all together. The new model was presented in an article entitled "The Synolic Approach to Human Resource Development," published in the British management journal Executive Development (Vol. 8, No. 2, 1995).
This book represents the authors effort to respond to requests for how-to techniques for utilizing the Synolic model. They opted to write it in allegory form to make it easier to read after a hard day at work. It tells the story of a promising and ambitious young human resources professional who is frustrated by the reluctance of a crusty marketing manager to utilize her impeccable HRD services. In search of answers, our heroine travels from New Jersey to London and returns ready to abandon her traditional HRD role and instead serve as performance consultant to the business units. As a narrative nonfiction book The Synolic Manager may be read as an introduction to the concept of a comprehensive approach to development of self or others. The Appendix may be used as a workbook for specific performance improvement and for career or retirement planning.