Saturday, June 30, 2012

Do What Matters!

To succeed in the efficient economy, one must dedicated their attention to their priorities. 

In summary, focus on the projects that matter.   

Cook Ding's Kitchen is a very good example of sheer focus.  Mr. Matz's blog does a superb  job  in explaining the practice of martial arts and the unique traditions of Asian Culture. 

This site is now celebrating their seventh year anniversary.  Those who are interested in the practice of martial arts, should visit this site.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Another View of Strategy

Do you know when to be methodical? Better yet, do you know when to be instinctive?

Going with the Force
It is another way of emphasizing the practice of  going with one's instinct, not analyzing all the time. Doing things with the attitude of "good enough" ... Focusing and operating from the perspective of the process,  not the outcome, is  how one does it. ...

Being in the present by centering one attention on the relevant priority objective. ..

Focus on one thing. Do it well. Then, one proceeds forward. 

The Question of the Day
Do you know when to be instinctive?

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Questions of the Day

Since the economy is extremely uncertain, does your competitor  have you on their list?    ...  Is it totally uncivilized to target their competition?  ...  Have you checked your Big Tangible Picture (BTP) lately?

Those who are in the strategic development and implementation business, understand that knowing the right question is the first step. It usually leads them toward the process of pinpointing the path of least resistance. 

Knowing the answer is irrelevant when one does not know the question.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Proper Planning Prevents Pissed Poor Performance

Compass Rule 
90% of the planning process is seeing the essence of one's goal and one's plan. The other 10% is having the fortitude to implement it properly.

Click here for an example of a "failure to plan is to plan to failure" situation.  

In conclusion, stupid people will do stupid things.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Compass Trend (23): The Rise of IPTV Continues

Since the 1990's, IPTV  technology has been hot .  ...  In a wireless economy, the cord could be history. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Assessing the Reasoning Behind a Perfect Game

The Essence of Any Grand Situation
The way begets one;
One begets two;
Two begets three;
Three begets the myriad creatures.
The myriad creatures carry on their backs the yin and embrace in their arms the yang and are the blending of the generative forces of the two.
There are no words which men detest more than ’solitary’, ‘desolate’, and ‘hapless’, yet lords and princes use these to refer to themselves.
Thus a thing is sometimes added to by being diminished and diminished by being added to.
What others teach I also teach.
‘The violent shall not come to a natural end.’
I shall take this as my precept.

The masses have always believed that that the cause of one grand success is usually based on one or two grand factors. Research tells us that most complex situations are driven by a cluster of obscure influences that most people usually have overlooked. 

A Miracle in San Francisco
Matt Cain pitched a perfect game this past Wed.   Some people have wondered what were some of the influences that played an important role behind his success.

Following is an abridged listing of those influences:
  • Since the ban of steroid and amphetamines, the slugging percentage of most "star" hitters have been lowered; 
  • the availability of information on the hitter's tendencies have given the opposing field team the advantage;
  • the on-coming trend of more pitchers using the cut fastball; and
  • this particular game had a home plate umpire who favors the pitcher in his pitch calls.
Click here for some of the other reasons

Assistance from the Field
"In the field of observation, 
fortune favors the prepared." - Pasteur

Luckily, Bruce Bochy, the S.F. Giants Manager (who is an exceptional game strategist) noticed that Mr. Cain was on the verge of pitching a no-hitter half way into the game and that the team had already scored enough runs to win the game. He decided to field his best defensive team out on field in order to assure that Cain gets the no-hitter.

If the distribution of the outcomes of an event can be described by a probability distribution, the event's likely outcomes can be predicted. Also, if the probability distribution of those given pitching outcomes increase, one should expect the frequency of events such as no-hitters and one-hitters to increase.

Having a Big Tangible Picture view is about understanding the configuration of a situation first, not the projected outcome.  It allows the successful strategist to focus on staging a probable and favorable future situation.

Regardless that the sport of baseball can be predictable, the players are the obvious cause for the unpredictability. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Question of the Day

To the Art of War cult, do you know why the elite and their strategists are focused on understanding the Six Secret Teachings, Wuzi 's Art of War and the rest of the eight strategic classics?

Ask your local Art of War expert if he or she knows the answer. ...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Dao of Strategic Assessment

Most people have a tendency of doing things on the fly.   A few of them believed in the notion that life is an adventure.   It is ok for them to improvise on everything.  They have near limitless time and resources. Everyone is not that fortunate.

You don't know what you don't know
You can't do what you don't know
You don't know until you measure
You don't measure what you don't value
You don't value what you don't measure
---  Six Sigma

To properly assess things strategically, you must have the determination of knowing the necessary information.  Do not take the important matters for granted.

In the information economy, the constant practice of absolute efficiency is the standard.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

All That Glitter is not Gold

In the ever-changing information economy, one should always take some time and examine  the origin of their technology and their food.  ... The fundamental strategy rule is to never take the basic necessities for granted.  ... Is this why only the paranoid survive?

The Compass Rule of the Successful Strategists
In order to be effective, the successful strategists always protect their necessities while disposing the non-essential accessories.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Compass Trend #22: The Automated Economy Continues

We predicted this trend of fast food eateries replacing their human workers with robots  in 2010.  ... Do you know why it is becoming relevant?  ...

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Art of the Focus (10)

History tells us that successful strategists have prevailed over their competition for many unique strategic reasons.

Regardless of those reasons, we believed that any strategic group could possess a positive chance to compete effectively if they could stay focused  on the target throughout the process of assessing, positioning and influencing .   

Click here for an interesting view on how some of the world class athletes stayed "in the zone."

Our associates at Cook Ding's Kitchen are the experts of this arcane practice. They have always been able to stay focused on their assortment of targets due to their intensive practice of Taijiquan and Yi Quan. 

How do you stay focused to your grand objective without being distracted?  ...  The answer is not in your copy of the Art of War. 

(This post has been updated.)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Shock and Awe

The following contribution is from an associate.

Shock and Awe
The often taunted Shock and Awe  tactic was not invented during the 21st century.  One can find some aspect of it during  the warring history of Imperial China. 

Many of the students of the AoW know about the story of how Sunzi used a "Shock and Awe" maneuver to transform an undisciplined group of the Emperor's royal concubines into a perfectly marching platoon.

The Fan Li's Tale
During the warring states, the great Fan Li who served Goujian, the ruler of Yue, implemented a psychological "Shock and Awe" strategy that shattered the mind set of their opposition- Wu's state.  It also enabled the Yue troops to subjugate their Army.

Side note: Sun Wu (aka. Sunzi) mentored the ruler of the Wu State in the principles of strategy.   ...  The Wu's ruler and his advisers had already exiled him from their court by the time Fan-Li and the Yue army fought them.

Fan Li utilized an unorthodox  tactic that is called "Killing the Chickens to Shock The Monkey" where 300 condemned prisoners was inspired to march to the edge of the enemy's line where the troops of Wu were stationed at. Concurrently, there were 500 warriors from the Yue state that were concealing behind the bushes.

After arriving at their enemy line, these 300 condemned men announced their loyalty to the Yue state and slitted their throats altogether. This surprised action shocked the Wu Troops so dramatically that they began to scream in utter confusion. The confidence of the Wu solders immediately dissipated and fled in terror.

Yue's troops immediately attacked the retreating opposition. During the onslaught, thousands of the Wu troops were slaughtered and Helu the King of Wu became mortally wounded.

The alpha intent of this unorthodox strategy was to target the psychological weaknesses of the competitor's leader and their troops.  Due to its originality, the targeted competitor was caught off guard.  The outcome became devastating for the losing side. 

Retrospectively, an underdog usually prevails in an extreme competitive situation through the approach of combining the qualities of directness and indirectness. 

Q: Do you know how to subjugate your competition through the use of various unorthodox means?  

# #
Side note:  It was rumored that Fan Li was an ardent reader of  Tai Gong's Six Secret Teachings.  

Click here for an interesting perspective on Shock and Awe" from St Petersburg Times.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Compass Tradition: Scripting With A Purpose (3)

Principles of Compass Scripting (abridged listing)
  1. Read the Big Tangible Picture before deciding on how you will script your listing of plays. 
  2. Script the positive case scenario tactics first.  Then, script the negative case scenario tactics.
  3. Have a minimum of two tactics for every contingency.
  4. Anticipate the possibilities by determining what are the wild cards.
  5. Be prepared for all scenarios.   Do not ever be surprised. 
  6. Build a "complete" strategy (Those who understand the arcane stuff from the Chinese strategic culture, know the basics for building a "complete" strategy.) 
  7. Keep the specifics of your plan to yourself and your inner circle.
  8. Understand that a change to the situation means that one must adjust their script and their strategic decisions.
  9. Assess, position and influence your settings and beyond regardless of the situation.
The Basic Requirements for Scripting
  • a pad of paper or a white board
  • a pencil or a set of colored markers
  • a compass
  • a digital timer
  • a quiet room
Does your copy of the Art of War focuses on this specific matter?

More to Come.  

"In the field of observation, chance favors the prepared mind. "  - Louis Pasteur

"In planning, never a useless move. In strategy, no step is in vain." - Chen Hao

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Compass Rule of API

The time that it takes to assess and position is inversely proportional to the time that it takes to influence. ... Do you know why?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Be Aware

It is time to re-protect your LinkedIn account and your other web accounts. Be aware  of the risk consequences.  Utilizing the Password Safe program is one of the many possible  counter moves.

Compass Rules: 
  • When strategizing, one must think about the levels of contingencies
  • The successful strategists always have a deep toolbox. 

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Our Compass Toolbox

Following is an abridged list of the various tools that we have used for our myriad of strategic development activities:
  • a compass;
  • a chronograph;
  • a weiqi (Go) game set;
  • a chess game set;
  • a whiteboard; and 
  • Our Compass Process. 
A strategist who succeeds with a geometric strategic process and a set of basic tools, usually becomes more effectively with the latest high-tech information systems. ... Those who connect to the Big Tangible Picture (BTP) regardless of their tool set, will possess a slight advantage for a minimum timeline.

Q: What tools are currently sitting inside of your toolbox?

Side note #1: Our strategic process model is based on a hierarchical order of specific principles from the Seven Strategy Classics, Military Methods and other unique strategic essays. 

Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Question of the Day

Q:  Do you know what are the pain points that have prevented you from making good decisions?

Friday, June 1, 2012

The First Challenge for Most Strategists

"I focus on one thing.  ... I properly finish it. ...  Then I go on."   - The Mantra of a Successful Strategist

Staying focused while avoiding distraction (or contentment) is a difficult task for most people.  ...  Do not get hooked on the opiate of the masses.  Stay with the process of your script.  ...

Through the use of a script, one knows when to stay on course and when to adjust.  ... 

Our associates at Cook Ding's Kitchen have always reminded the novices and the neophytes that one cannot successfully strategize if he/she is not able to stay focused on their objective.