1. High Performance Teams
Experience the advantage of working
The referent in collaboration
2. “The formation of a new team of persons coming from different business areas, and
even from other organisations, to take on a far-reaching project resulted in the need to
develop a training program that would create a propitious environment for
interpersonal knowledge and promote teamwork. But above all, it was necessary to
clearly show the challenges and problems that we faced, which is the most novel aspect
with respect to a training action. The experience with the Equilibrium Cone was
simultaneously gratifying and successful, given that it combined fun aspects (games
and simulators) and operational aspects (specific work projects) that satisfied the
objectives of both cohesion and efficiency, respectively.”
Ricardo Alonso Fernández
Director of Corporate Banking
Global Banking & Markets
Santander Banking Group
The current environment in which organizations must
compete is increasingly complex. Firms must survive
and grow in an interconnected world in which it is
increasingly difficult to foresee future
The objective of Synergy program is to develop the
following organizational capacities and
Distributed leadership: To appreciate and act upon
recognition of the significant differences between
traditional leadership paradigms, based on the
individual and the new model of distributed
leadership which is based on the executive team
High Performance Teams: To build autonomous
and self-driven teams that develop initiatives, to
make risk-based decisions and that can
demonstrate flexibility and diversity in action.
Change management: To identifying the benefits of
decision-making based on teams in situations of
complexity, interrelationships and constant change.
Decision Making: To identify the guidelines needed
to take actions through uncertainty and to reconcile
anxieties arising from such decisions.
Synergy: To promoting the optimal distribution of
resources through shared use.
Synergy is an attended seminar that, for two days,
submerges the participants in a situation of growing
complexity, uncertainty and change. With the use of
a behavioural simulator, it achieves a high impact
and generates emotional ownership, whereby
learning through experience is assured.
Our diagnostic approach based on the notion of
duality – personal and business – allows clients to
recognise how inter-relating personal capacities is
the key to promoting cultures of Shared Leadership
and Teamwork in organisations.
Experimentation through Gaming and Simulation is
a highly effective, attractive, motivating and
proven learning methodology, with constant
changes of rhythm, which encourages constructive
interactions and sustainable, participant owner-
ship. Our program designs reflect our belief in the
idea of serious play and its causal link to executive
4. “Participating in HIGH PERFORMANCE TEAMS was an intellectual challenge for me
due to the different way of facing a known subject. The idea of breaking with schemes
and not being anchored in traditional ones is perfectly clear. Learning to dominate my
natural leadership in order to adapt it to good teamwork was another good practice.
Overall, an intense and very recommendable experience for people who want to learn
5. Program Outline
Introduction to High-Performance Cultures
How technology and globalization influence the ex-
The risk of treating complex decisions as simple. Long
term and systemic implications
More than the sum of the parts- a complementary
approach to executive teams
The importance of a High Performance Environ-
The impossibility of direct intervention in the High
An Entrepreneurial Team Learning Perspective- how
to build a flexible and adaptive organization
Communication as the product outcome of an inter-
active exchange process rather than a simple infor-
mation dissemination process
The new field of Distributed Leadership for today’s
high performing executives
A fundamental dichotomy in leadership styles: the
Entrepreneur versus the Manager
The risks of dysfunctional leadership profiles: indi-
vidualism, simplification, groupthink and perfection-
How does leadership behavior encourage or discour-
age team performance
Measuring risky leadership behaviors through the
TEAM 12 test
Teamwork is an emerging pattern of decentralized
and spontaneous self-coordination
Promoting team consciousness
Excessive cohesion is a disadvantage. Teamwork is
not an end in itself
The group dynamics approach maximizes results
High Performance Organization
My weakness is the result of my politics. How am I
blind to it?
An organization that learns from experience. The im-
portance of failure, errors and mistakes
Silver bullets in designing for the “it depends” conun-
drum. Learning to discriminate
The personal perspective
How to benefit from the anxiety produced by uncer-
We are prisoners of our own mental models
Locus of control or how to take the responsibility for
The Cooplexity model
The knowledge level: Pro-activity oriented to results
The teambuilding level: group integration and trust
The team working level: equal relationship and crite-
rion of action
6. A Holistic Model of Organizational Complexity.
High Performance Teams is an experiential
learning program based on a behavioural
simulation that enables participants to transition
from a situation of uncertainty to one of
complexity. The first stage of uncertainty relates to
conditions of change, crisis, chaos, mergers and
takeovers, and can include the dynamics of growth,
new businesses, and corporate restructuring. The
second stage of complexity is related to mature,
competitive, globalized, interrelated and
As the program progresses, both organizational-
level and personal-level needs are diagnosed. Initial
competences tend to focus on either exploration,
flexibility, the ability to influence, or learning. This
is complemented by a subsequent focus on more
relational competences including team dynamics,
such as, motivation, communication, cooperation,
shared leadership, delegation and coordination.
As the participating team develops, and as an
indirect result of its search for a proposed objective,
the group modifies its priorities naturally i.e.
without external interventions. The participants
become aware of the ‘whole’ and balance the
achievement of their personal goals with those of
A playful, powerful and experiential dynamic,
generates high emotional impacts on group
motivation and cohesion, and so builds a
heightened sense of ‘ownership’.
In complex and interdependent environments
where the individual capacity to decide
appropriately is either exceeded or dependent on
others, the team decision-making mechanism kicks-
in. A new approach to decision-making is
demanded, allowing the organization to build a
consensual strategy driven by actions based on tacit
and local knowledge, creating synergies through
Our rigorously developed conceptual model enables
subsequent personal action plans and the
immediate transference of new executive
competences to the client’s organization.
7. Key takeaways
The dynamics of the program allow critical executive themes to be internalised, and include:
Areas of personal analysis
How to tolerate frustration to permanent and ongoing change.
How to work in uncertain environments.
How to transition from the ambiguous (emotional) through to the paradoxical (emotional/
rational) and from the paradoxical through to a resolution (rational).
How to manage anxieties generated by a sense of a lack of control in emergent situations
How to generate attitudes favouring Teamwork as an organizational response.
How to communicate in symmetry (from peer to peer, as equals).
How to embed and recognize the effects of Non-hierarchical leadership.
How to develop and produce performance-enhancing competences in the relationship be-
tween level of ambition, commitment and results.
The perspective of the participants is such that the transfer of program learning outcomes to organiza-
tional realities is high. This also allows for:
Filming the sessions in order to obtain personal video-feedback with an analysis of personal
behaviour and individual impact on the group and organization.
Planning subsequent coaching sessions.
Complementing the session with subsequent consulting for the organisation based on the
Defining an action plan for personal development.
Therefore, the program is directed at companies and organisations of a certain size and complexity. Spe-
cifically, it is directed at companies that are either operating in highly competitive environments, face rap-
idly changing situations or seeking high strategic growth rates as a result of new executive initiatives.
8. “This program is an intelligent way of demonstrating through play that at the company,
we are all necessary and that there is strength in unity. It is a side to transversality, and
at Dannon it has been very useful for realising how important people are in all
functions, each in their own role, so that projects advance and become a reality.”
Director of Purchasing of Dannon for Southern Europe
Pr. Ricardo Zamora
Zamora has specialized in the development of sys-
temic competences and applies this program in
large corporations with complex interrelationships.
He is the creator of Synergy, an attended seminar
that, for two days, submerges the participants in a
situation of growing complexity, uncertainty and
He is managing Director of Training Games and as-
sociate professor in the Advanced Management
Program at ESADE Business School - Executive Edu-
cation, Department of Business Policy. Associate
professor at the Executive MBA and Bologna Mas-
ters at ESADE Faculties.
His publications include “Cooplexity: A model of
collaboration in complexity for management in
times of uncertainty and change” and “Teamwork:
motivation, commitment and results”.
Is member of the ESADE's Leadership Development
Research Centre focused on effective leadership
and emotional and social competencies (Glead).
He is member of the System Dynamics Society and
NASAGA (North American Simulation and Gaming
Pr. Edward Gonsalves
Edward specializes in the development of execu-
tive program design for teams in entrepreneurial
and large firms. He holds a number of director-
ships, advises, consults and publishes in the area of
Strategic and Entrepreneurial Learning.
Edward is a Visiting Professor on MBA and Entre-
preneurship Programs at the European Business
School, London, Barcelona Management Institute
and Toulouse University Business School-ESEC, Bar-
celona. Edward is a Founding member of the Bar-
celona Entrepreneurship City Group.
His publications include C.W.J.A., Gonsalves, E.
(2008). Entrepreneurial Resource, Organizational
Learning and Strategy-Making: Linking Theory and
Empirical Design. In R. T. Harrison, & C. M. Leitch
(Eds.), Entrepreneurial Learning: Conceptual
Frameworks and Applications. London: Routledge.
He was the learning facilitator on the Park Royal
Partnership 'Entrepreneurial Mentoring Program'
for Small & Medium Size enterprises (a London De-
velopment Agency funded program) and is a lead
adviser to the GBP15m London Carnival Village
We deliver value to our clients through the combination of experiences in
both the academic and professional learning spheres.
The faculty of the High Perforrmance Teams program presents a unique combination between academic
and professional careers. Both, Edward Gonsalves and Ricardo Zamora are professors at prestigious Uni-
versities and Business Schools; they have specialize on complementary aspects of the Cooplexity model
upon which the seminars are based and both have applied their knowledge with proven success in large
companies and multinationals. Many of their publications and lines of research are used in the course
material, readings, tests and form the basis of group discussions.
ESADE: Management School of Business of
UTD: University of Texas Dallas
UAB: Universtat Autónoma de Barcelona
Cobega (Coca Cola Group), Dannon , LU
(Dannon Group), Font Vella (Dannon Group),
Heineken, Puleva Food, Mahou-San Miguel,
Grupo Siro, Bimbo (Sara Lee Bakery Group),
Unilever, Frigo (Unilever Group), Nestlé,
Arbora & Ausonia (Procter & Gamble Group)
Telefónica, Hewlett Packard, Thales
Information Systems, Adbraintage, Astra, T-
AstraZeneca, BDF - Beiersdorf, Boehringer
Ingelheim, Farma-Lepori (Angelini Group),
CibaVision (A Novartis Company), Novartis,
Roche Diagnostics, Pfizer, Chefaro , Lilly,
Santander Group, Banco de Sabadell,
Deutsche Bank, BBVA, Caixa de Catalunya, La
Construction, Real Estate
Ferrovial-Agroman, Acieroid, Lafarge-Asland,
Sanitas, Sanitas Residential, Mutua del
Kao Corporation, BASF, AKZO Chemicals
REE (Red Eléctrica de España), ENDESA,
UNIÓN FENOSA,AGBAR Group
INDITEX, Dimodes, Nike, Venilia (grupo
17 Cox’s Ground
Oxford OX2 6PX
T. +44 (0) 203 026 5376