Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Metaphors of the Day (2)

In the modern world, some people used professional sports (i.e., football, basketball, baseball, hockey, soccer, etc.) to  represent their current ventures.   

                                              The Weiqi (G0) Metaphor
In Asia, there are some strategists who occasionally used the metaphor of weiqi. Conceptually, the successful strategists who properly prevails when he/she  effectively surrounds their target.  We will touch more on this metaphor later.

The Chinese Chess Metaphor
Some of our associates preferred to use the Chinese chess metaphor (xiang qi) to describe the action in certain situations.  They have told us that this game is more closer to what competition is really about.  

The Specifics
In this game, there is a river between each side.  The solders, the cavalry, the cannons and the chariots do the field work.  The implemented solders can only advance. Retreating is not a option.

The Generals are usually involved in the conflicts, not the Kings and the Queens. They usually stay in their space (the city) and operate remotely. The Generals can only leave their eight-pointed space when there is an opportunity to capture the opposing General from their remote position.

Unlike its western cousin (the Knight), the Horses cannot jump over any pieces that is positioned in front of it. The Cannons can only capture a opposing piece remotely by having one piece in front of it.  

The Elephants are always protecting the General from within their side of the domain while the Advisers are always protecting the Generals from within the city.  Both pieces are not allowed to leave their assigned territory. 

In this game,  the solders that reached the last rank, does not get promoted. 

Interestingly, there are more specialized defensive roles in this game than western Chess.

The Reality of the Strategy Game
In life, the chief decision makers stay in their ivory tower (the city) while the field operators are on the ground, doing the grunt work.  Some senior managers and middle managers are always protecting the chief decision makers from the harsh reality of their decision.

Many offensive moves are done remotely (the cannons) before the on-field confrontation begins.  Look at the political game.  It begins by the implementation of indirect shots within the news media.

A foot solder is only promoted after the battle is over.

In the field level of life, the continuous achievement of momentum is important.  Choosing the right metaphor and having a good strategic process model are also important.  The right metaphor enables one to effectively communicate the state of the situation to the team while the process model gives the chief decision model an integrated view of the objective, the situation and the operational  specifics.

One's own philosophy concluded the psychology of the situation. The psychology determines  the mathemathics and the physics of the strategy.

Much of strategy is about psychology. Do you know the general psychology of the strategy game?

The Question of the Day
How does the the Art of War metaphor fit into this strategic game of the information economy?

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