Mark McNeilly, who is a very smart marketing strategist, an insightful military historian and an adjunct professor at University of North Carolina, wrote a pair of books on applying the strategic concepts and principles from Sunzi's Art of War to the business realm and to modern warfare.
The essence of his two books are based on six meta-principles, that summarized the 200+ principles of Sunzi.
Following is the list of those six principles:
1. Win all without fighting: Achieving the objective without destroying it
2. Avoid Strength, Attack Weakness: Striking where the enemy is most vulnerable
3. Deception and Foreknowledge: Winning the Information War
4. Speed and Preparation: Moving Swiftly to Overcome Resistance
5. Shaping the Enemy: Preparing the Battlefield
6. Character-Based Leadership: Leading by Example
- SunTzu and The Art of Modern Warfare
His first book demonstrates how his six principles were successfully used in various business situations. ... It is a good book for those who are strategically-minded. We highly recommended his books on Sunzi (Sun Tzu) and George Washington. These books are great reading especially during a long weekend.
Our Compass Project
In terms of planning a field operational strategy, we concluded that McNeilly's six principles are quite indispensable when or if one possesses relevant strategic experience and ultra-class strategic assessment skills.
During our research, we have carefully looked at it and transformed those six principles to a macro set of meta-principles by connecting it to other principles from other arcane Chinese classics. Then we connected it to the famous Bill Walsh's Starter's Script and other unique but strategic models.
1. Ready. Aim. Fire
To achieve the path of least resistance, one focuses their resources and their efforts toward the origin of the competitor's inefficiency while deciding on when to exploit it with zero to minimal impact to one's own team's. This step can be achieved when one knows the configuration of their Big Tangible Picture (BTP).
2. Focus. Focus. Hocus Pocus
Focusing one's strengths toward onto the weaknesses of the competition with the tactical "pretext" option while avoiding the influence of the competition.
3. Know Early. Act Now
Knowing the strategic reality of the competition in each tactical situation and capitalizing on their inefficiency.
4. Be Quick. Don't Hurry
The strategically prepared, urgency-driven team accelerates forward to the target especially in an up-tempo no huddle mode especially when the comprehension of the technical weaknesses behind their opponent's inefficiency is fully recognized.
5. Stage and Shape the Competition
Implement a sequence of tactics that influences the competition to behave in an absolute mode in a specific game situation before the "game-changer" tactic is ever implemented.
6. Lead by Deed
By successfully following the PACE guidelines of the script and implementing the scripted tactical plays, the team starts to execute properly. The incremental momentum gain becomes possible when the team believes in their own execution, their teammates, the strategy (the motive and the methods) behind the script, the field strategist and the backroom strategists.
When the execution of the script works, the entire team becomes confident in the wisdom, the credibility, the benevolence, the courage and the discipline of the principals behind the script development.
Psychologically, the continuity of this momentum gain creates wins. Conclusively, the continuity of this positive practice generates more streaks of positive wins.
Strong and smart leadership and the mastery of this well-devised scheme-based tool usually play a significant role in a winning culture.
Some More Notes on the Compass Book Project
Our book integrates the basics of Bill Walsh's Starter Script and the principles from Sunzi, Jiang Tai Gong, and other successful strategists and demonstrates how to utilize it in a chaotic strategic situation while being mindful of when and how the competition adjusts to the implementer's script.
It also utilizes our Assess, Position and Influence model that is a conceptual superset of Colonel John Boyd's Observation, Orientation, Decision and Action (OODA) strategic methodology.
More to Come