That is the famous quote from Chen Hao, a famous Tang dynasty military official. It can be found in Samuel Griffith's translation of Sun Tzu essay.
Planning efficient moves in a complex situation is considered the pinnacle of strategic and tactical planning while implementing zero inefficient steps during the operation.
While every ambitious field strategist have quietly wished that they can achieve this level of excellence, the key is having the mindful skill of understanding the configuration of the Big Tangible Picture.
Regardless of the strategic terrain, understanding the disposition and its discourse within it is significant to the ambitious strategist who wanted to complete his mission with the objective of acquiring "minimum to zero" damage.
The "under-resourced" strategist cannot plan against an extreme competitor without assessing the predictability and the competitive positions of the situation for the obvious strategic reasons.
While executing the strategy, he must know that the transitional state of the target is in a static mode or in a predictable change mode. Regardless of the pace of the situation, the strategist must be prepared for all scenarios.
Just remember that fortune favors the prepared mind.
The Importance of Planning and Preparation
One could only predict the probable outcome of any strategic situation when he understands the following factors:
- the predictability factor that operates behind it; and
- how one's strategic position corresponds to that situation.