Defining Ortegrity

This is the third article in the Explaining Synergic Organization series.

Timothy Wilken

Life’s pattern of organization is the tensegrity, it has been in use on earth for over three and one half billion years. The tensegrity is the basis of organizing all living systems including our own bodies. Up until now we humans have not understood the mechanism and therefore could not use this pattern to organize our marriages, our businesses, our organizations and institutions, our communities, or even the entire human species.

Humans who organize themselves using the pattern of tensegrity will find themselves orders of magnitude more efficient, more productive, more creative, more intelligent. More importantly they will be much more successful in pursuing their goals and desires.

Within this half century, we humans have developed ergometric science to help us improve our tool-making. Ergometric scientists tell us how to best design tools to fit the human form. By carefully measuring both the physiology and psychology of the human body, today’s scientists are seeking to determine the best designs for new tools. They know that the best tools are those that fit you like a well-tailored glove fits your hand.

Recently ergometric science has been much advanced by a breakthrough in our understanding of human intelligence. With the development of the “dual mind” model of human intelligence it is now possible to design tools that fit the human “mind-brain”. In other words, we can now ergometrically engineer tools to fit the way we humans think.

We humans are the toolmakers, and in our history we have made many tools—both simple and complex. The most complex and complicated of all our tools are our organizations—the corporations, institutions, militaries, and governments of earth. These are also the most important tools in all our lives, for they significantly influence both the quality and quantity of our lives. Of all the tools we might seek to ergometrically engineer to fit the human “mind-brain”, there exists no greater potential benefit for all humankind then by applying this science to our most complex tools—our human organizations.

One such tool has recently completed development, and is now available to organizations for immediate application. This first ergometrically designed tool for human organizations is called the Ortegrity. The Ortegrity is a “mind-brain” compatible system of organizing humans. It can be used by a small group of individuals or a giant corporation with hundreds of thousands of employees.

The Ortegrity is a “system of human organization that creates a conflict-free environment for decision making and action implementation”. This is an environment so ergometrically suited to human thinking that efficiency and productivity are predicted to increase 10 to 1000 times. Yes, that is 10 to 1000 times more efficient and productive.

The Ortegrity achieves its great power by creating an ideal psychological environment for human thinking. One important finding of recent mind-brain research, is “that whenever humans experience conflict they lose access to their full intelligence”. When humans are confronted with conflict, their mind-brains shift to a very primitive and highly reactive way of thinking called the survive mode. The survive mode  evolved in the jungle to insure physical survival. Its primary skills are fighting and fleeing. Its extremes are rage and terror. All humans thinking in the survive mode will find their intelligence to be severely limited. Access is lost to the faculties of reason and intuition. In severe conflict, many of us lose even our ability to speak. Unfortunately, the survive mode turns on with the slightest conflict, and instantaneously our intelligence begins to decrease. It is not simply on or off. It is more like the rheostat dimmer switch controlling a dinning room light. A little conflict will produce a little loss of intelligence, while a large conflict will produce a large loss of intelligence. If we remain in conflict for weeks, then we will operate at limited intelligence for weeks. And in full rage or terror, we humans access only a tiny fraction of our potential intelligence. Conflict is to organizations as friction is to machinery.

The power of the Ortegrity results then from its unique ability to create a conflict-free state. It is this conflict-free state that optimizes human intelligence and creativity. It is this conflict-free state that maximizes efficiency and productivity. It is this conflict-free state that increases the quality of work-life. It is the conflict-free state that allows all relationships between all members to become win-win.

In the difficult political-economic times ahead, organizations must learn to work smarter. Only by optimizing the human factor can they hope to survive. The Ortegrity promises to increase efficiency and productivity by 10 to 1000 times. It accomplishes this by increasing the intelligence and creativity of all members in the system. This is working “smartest”. The Ortegrity was designed to fit the human “mind-brain” like a well tailored glove fits your hand, it could change the way we all work and live in the future.

When living systems—the plants, the animals, and our own human bodies are compared to the best of man-made systems—the corporations, the institutions, our governments and militaries, Living systems are found to be one to three orders of magnitude more efficient and productive. By utilizing the Ortegrity, it appears possible to restructure human organizations so they are ten to one thousand times more efficient and productive.

Synergic Consensus

Synergic consensus is a much more powerful mechanism of decision than the majority rule of present day committees. All decisions with an Ortegrity system are made within Decision Heterarchy. A decision heterarchy is made up of a group of humans with common purpose. The minimum number is 2 the maximum number is presently unknown. I believe the ideal size may be ~six or seven individuals. The group is organized horizontally with all individuals sharing equal authority and equal responsibility.

We humans are most familiar with the committee system. It is very different than the Heterarchy. While they are both methods of organizing human individuals to make decisions for group action. Committees are filled with conflict and highly ineffective. In a committee no individual is held responsible for the actions taken by the group. And decision is made by majority ultimatum. A dissenting minority member can support the action he voted against or leave the committee. Heterarchy of the Ortegrity, in contrast organizes individuals to have equal authority to decide on joint action with equal responsibility for the resultant that is produced by that action.

Synergic consensus occurs when a group of humans sitting in heterarchy negotiate to reach a decision in which they all win and in which no one loses. In a synergic heterarchy, all members sit on the same level as “equals”. No one has more authority than anyone else. Everyone has equal responsibility and equal authority within the heterarchy. The assignment for the heterarchy is to find a plan of action so that all members win. It is the collective responsibility of the entire heterarchy to find this “best” solution. Anyone can propose a plan to accomplish the needs of the group. All problems related to accomplishing the needs would be discussed at length in the heterarchy.

The proposed action for solving a problem is examined by all members of the heterarchy. Anyone can suggest a modification, or even an alternative action to solve the problem. All members of the heterarchy serve as information sources for each other. The heterarchy continues in discussion until a plan of action is found that will work for everyone. When all are in agreement and only then can the plan be implemented. The plan insures that all members of the synergic heterarchy win. All members are required to veto any plan where they or anyone else would lose. But all vetoes are immediately followed by renegotiation to modify the plan so the loss can be eliminated.

Unanimous Agreement

Synergic consensus is unanimous agreement. I can hear the objections now. “That’s impossible, you will never get everyone in the group to agree.” “Decisions will never get made.” “It is hard enough to get a majority to agree.”

A Japanese business heterarchy is slower at making decisions than a single manager in an American business hierarchy. It takes longer for a group of individuals to discuss, negotiate, and come to agreement than it takes for a single American manager to decide all by himself. If the speed of making decisions is the only criteria for choosing a mechanism of decision making then the business tyrant—the rule by one is the clear standout.

However, the Japanese have shown us the disadvantages of other directed hierarchies. Majority rule committee is not a rapid decision making process. Individuals within a committee are seeking to gain the majority of support. This takes time—sometimes a lot of time. The focus is on lining up votes—working deals—in a word—politics. This process is anything but rapid. If all decisions in American businesses were made by majority rule, decision making would probably be even slower than in Japanese companies using heterarchical consensus.

Synergic consensus is only now becoming available to humanity. We do not yet know how fast it will be at making decisions. But, I predict that decision making by synergic consensus will prove faster than decision making by majority rule. Synergic consensus eliminates conflict. Recall conflict is the struggle to avoid loss. Conflict is at the very heart of majority rule decision making. The focus of synergic consensus is very different. The entire group knows from the outset that they cannot lose. They are focused on choosing a plan of action that serves the needs of all the members in the group—to choose a plan of action that causes no one to lose. The synergic veto is not invoked capriciously. The only basis for synergic veto is to prevent someone from losing. This is a mechanism to eliminate loss—to choose the very best plan of action for everyone. This may well speed up the process of decision making. In any event regardless of the speed of decision, implementation will be rapid. There is no conflict. This is a major advantage.

The Synergic Veto

Synergic Mechanism accepts the Neutral value—To Prohibit Loss. Those humans using synergic mechanism desire just as strongly as those using neutral mechanism not to lose, but synergic mechanism is more. Both parties need to win. Let us recall our basic definition,

Co-OPERATION —def—> Operating together to insure that both parties win and that neither party loses. The negotiation to insure that both parties are helped and neither party is hurt.

Co-Operation is the mechanism of action necessary whenever an individual desires to accomplish a task beyond his individual abilities. Imagine, you and a friend are moving a heavy piece of furniture. Neither of you are strong enough to move the furniture by yourself. You decide to co-operate—You decide to operate together during the lifting. You would negotiate to insure the win—to insure being helped.

The conversation might go like this: “Are you ready?”    “Ok.”    “Ready, 1.. 2.. 3.. lift!” and if things are going well that is fine, but if one end gets too heavy then Synergic Co-Operation prohibits loss… “Whoops! Set it down.” This is the synergic veto.

This is the true meaning of co-Operation—the negotiation to insure that both individuals win. And the synergic veto to stop the action if either party is losing. Losing is the only valid use for synergic veto. All synergists are required to immediately veto any action in which they or anyone else would be harmed—any action in which they or anyone else would lose.

No-win Scenarios

Remember, even when you use synergic mechanism you can’t always win. There will times when the constraints facing a synergic group are such that loss is unavoidable. Synergic mechanism strives to make this a rare situation, but loss will occur. If you can’t find a win-win scenario to clear a synergic veto, then synergic mechanism dictates the group must admit and accept the inevitability of loss. When a No-Win situation occurs, the synergic group shifts its focus to finding that action or solution that will minimize the loss. And then, whatever the loss is, it must be shared equally.

In synergy, we are one. In synergy are equal. In synergy we strive to win together. But if we are forced to lose, then we will lose together—this means we will all share equally in the loss.

Synergic Equality

The basic unit of synergic organization is a synergic group organized as heterarchy. All members of a synergic heterarchy are equal. They share equal responsibility for the actions chosen by the group. They share equal authority in the process of choosing those actions. When individuals work together in synergic relationship to a accomplish a common goal. They are considered as a single system.

When individuals work together in synergic relationship, new abilities, skills, talents, etc., emerge as a part of that relationship, that are not there when the individuals work separately. The individuals working in synergic group are more efficient, more productive, more creative, and more intelligent, than they are when working separately. The result of their synergy is that they create “more” together than they could create apart. This “more” is Haskell’s “Co-Operators’ surplus”.

When individuals work together in synergic relationship, they equally contribute to the synergic emergents, and will share equally in the Co-Operators’ surplus. Haskell’s “Co-Operators Surplus” is property and it is owned equally by all who synergized within the synergic group to create it. Within a synergic group all members commit to the Six Tenets of Synergic Equality.

1) In synergy, I am ONE with my associates.

2) In synergy, I am MORE with my associates than by myself.

3) In synergy, I am EQUAL to all my associates.

4) In synergy when we WIN, I will win MORE with my associates than by myself and I will share equally in the GAINS.

5) In synergy, when we LOSE, I will lose LESS with my associates than by myself and I will share equally in the LOSSES.

6) In synergy, we will win together or lose together, but we are TOGETHER.

SYNERGY—Working Together

In synergic relationship individuals continue negotiating to insure the win, In synergic relationship, all players are focused on winning. Everyone is seeking help. The game calls for only winners, there is no need for loss. Each player is expected and encouraged to veto any suggested plan wherein they would lose. It is of primary importance in synergic relationship to veto all loss positions. Failure to do so instantly shifts the relationship back to adversary, with the immediate return of conflict. In contrast, since there are no losers in synergic relationships, there is also no conflict. And because obtaining help by helping others attracts the highest quality help, real winners seeks synergic help. Seek always synergic help by making sure that those who help you also win. Be sure they understand how their helping you will also help them. Use the following approach to help you succeed.

Whenever you encounter conflict in a potential helper, they are struggling to avoid loss. This means they believe they will lose by helping you.

1) Analyze the relationship, if your potential helper is really losing, then modify the plan so they will win. To proceed without modifying your plan will only continue conflict and get you only the lowest quality help.

2) If the potential helper simply misunderstands, and in fact he really does win, then explain why he misunderstands, or fill in the information as to how he wins. When he knows he will win by helping you—he will immediately seek co-Operation.

TRUSTING—Synergic Attitude

The most powerful strategy one can use in our present world then is to seek synergic relationship. But survival requires you to avoid individuals committed to adversary relationships. They too, are seeking to make you help them—the adversary way needs losers.

Synergists are sometimes mistaken by adversary players as weak adversaries. This is not the case. A good synergist immediately notices any loss, and will seek co-operation. If relationship where both parties win cannot be negotiated, then the synergist will break off a relationship with the committed adversary.

Synergists don’t fight or flight; they communicate and negotiate. They understand to fight or flight is to abandon the synergic way for instant conflict—for instant hurt—for instant loss. The synergic individual desires always to win. He seeks synergic relationship to increase his chances of winning.

Anytime, the synergist is not winning, he seeks to renegotiate. If he is unable to co-Operate, he chooses not to conflict. He simply ends the relationship with the least possible loss. He lives the attitude of the good synergist. I am a helper, and therefore I will help you, and trust you to help me. I will seek to help all my fellow humans, but my resources are limited, and in the long run, I must help those who help me.

Avoiding Ultimatums

Ultimatum is an adversary condition when the stronger forces the weaker to lose. This can occur between two individuals or between two nations. For example, let us assume that two individuals decide to help each other—that is they decide to work together—to form an “us”. These individuals will discover their individual preferences are constrained by their joint life. Because they share resources, they can’t both live in their favorite city, or in their favorite house, or own their favorite automobile, unless by chance they have identical favorites. The “us” is formed to gain the power and advantage of interdependence. Interdependence’s “division of labor” improves the standard of living for both, but the price for the higher standard of living is that the choices of both individuals are constrained by the needs and wants of the other.

In the adversary relationships, we experience this constraint as the ultimatum. The ultimatum is an opportunity to lose. You can lose-a-little or you can lose-a-lot, but you will lose.

Imagine, a husband comes home from work. He says to his wife,

“Well, I lost my job today. I have had it with the bay area. We are going to move to Los Angeles, there are good jobs there.” His wife counters, “But, I don’t like Los Angeles. The kids and I will lose, if we have to move to Los Angeles.” The husband plays the trump card. “Well you can either go to Los Angeles or you can get a divorce. Its up to you, but I’m moving to L.A.”

Which do you want?—a broken arm or a broken leg? Your choice is between losing-a-little by moving to a community you don’t like, or losing-a-lot by getting a divorce, but you are going to lose.

Seeking Bindings

Now constraint is placed on any group of individuals who choose to live or work together. This is a law of physics. Constraint does not go away in the synergic relationship. But it remains only a constraint, and not a compromise. In synergic relationship, you are never forced to lose. You, in fact, are encouraged and expected to veto all losses. The only path the two of you agree to walk is one in which you both win. In synergic relationship there is no loss. You may win-a-lot or you may win-a-little, but you will win.

The synergic alternative to the ultimatum is called the binding. It is the contract that results from the negotiation to insure the win—co-Operation. It is the contract establishing a relationship in which you both win in which you both are helped.

Imagine, our husband coming home who enjoys synergic relationship with his wife. “Honey, I got laid off today, I have really had it with the bay area. I just can’t stay here anymore. I feel like I’m losing.” “Well, where do you want to go?” “Los Angeles, I hear there are good jobs down there.” “No, the kids and I would lose in Los Angeles. How about Denver?” “Okay, I could live with that. Let me check the job market tomorrow.”

In synergic relationship there is no loss. You may win-a-lot or you may win-a-little, but you will win.

Life Utilizes Synergic Consensus

Today, mind and brain scientists have made enormous progress in understanding how the human brain works. There has been many surprises in these recent advances. But the biggest shocker is that the brain doesn’t decide what to do. Decision making is not controlled centrally in the brain. The mind-brain appears to act as a coordination and consensus system for meeting all the needs of the cells, tissues, and organs of the body. The brain doesn’t decide to eat. The cells of the body decide to eat, the brain coordinates their activity and carries out the consensus will.

Our human brain stores the gathered information from the body’s sensing of its environment, the brain presents opportunities for action reflective of both the sensing of environment and the needs and goals of the 40,000,000,000,000 cells it serves. The brain is not the leader of the body, it is the follower of the body. It is a system that matches needs of the body with its sensing of opportunities to meet these needs by action within the environment. The brain is a ‘synergic government’ that truly serves its constituents—the cells, tissues, and organs that make up the human body. The body is governed by unanimous consensus and has survived millions of years.

The apparent ‘I’ is not real. It is really a ‘we’. We humans have mistaken the self-organization of synergic consensus for the directed organization of an ego decider.

If the human body can using unanimous rule democracy and synergic consensus can organize and coordinate the actions of 40,000,000,000,000 cells so totally that we identify the whole organism as a single individual, then we humans should be able to use these same mechanisms to organize our species and solve our human problems.

Read the full description of ORTEGRITY