Sun Tzu's Methods

Seeing Patterns: Real or Imaginary?

Human beings are wired to find patters, but unfortunately, we can see patterns even where they do not exist. A recent study in Science magazine demonstrates the people imagine patterns even where there are none, especially in times of stress. Like all of science, Sun Tzu's strategy uses patterns, models, for making decisions about the chaotic information in the environment, but these models have been proven over 2,500 years in the most unforgiving environment of all: the life and death struggles of war.

The Future of Strategy: Creating a Home for Students of Sun Tzu

I personally try to contact all the people who download our free copy of Sun Tzu's work, but one of my frustrations in that most readers don't seem to realize that learning strategy isn't about simply reading a book but relearning how they think about success. Thanks to our recent trainers meeting, I realize what people studying Sun Tzu have been looking for home, a place where they can get together with other people who want to master those concepts. I was recently invited to be part of a group setting up a local Seattle chapter of the Association for Strategic Planners.

Two Ways to Win: The Presidential Debate

Sun Tzu teaches two key ways to win a battle, that is, a meeting of opponents, of two evenly matched opponents. The first is preparing a surprise beforehand. There is always a risk in this because battle is unpredictable, but the idea is that you will be better prepared than your opponent. If it works, the confusion of surprise creates an opening that you can use. If you aren't prepared to risk a surprise, you have to wait for your opponent to make a mistake and take advantage of it.

The Battle Looms: Upcoming Presidential Debates

Much of Sun Tzu's system is based on choosing the conditions under which we meet our opponents. The term that we translate as "battle" from Chinese means "a meeting." It is not the same concept as "conflict," which is another Chinese character (and the worst case outcome of any meeting). Too often, we prepare for meetings with opponents thinking only in terms of conflict and, since that is what both side prepare for, it is too often the result. We are about to see the first meeting of the presidential race.

Unexpected Opportunities: Our Strategy Radio Network

Sun Tzu teaches that we have to recognize opportunities and make decisions about how to use them in an instant. This is necessary because events creates opportunities in unexpected ways. For example, when Sarah Palin picked for VP, it turns out the Cliff, my brother-in-law, who works for us setting up radio interviews, used to be a next door neighbor of Sarah's.

Act While Others Are Planning: Preventing a Hillary Surprise

Sun Tzu teaches that the best time to move into new territory is while others are still thinking about it.  By seizing a position early, you control what others can and cannot do. The same is true when your "move" is simply suggesting what they should do.  Psychologically, opponents will usually refuse to do what you suggest because most would rather be wrong that prove you right.

Self-Destructive Attacks: The Obama Media and Palin

Sun Tzu's method is called "winning without conflict" because the heart of the method is advancing your position while avoiding destructive battles. While all battles are destructive, the most destructive are those attacking an opponent's strong point. As the saying goes, it doesn't matter if the rock hits the pitcher or the pitcher hits the rock, it's going to be bad for the pitcher. When you don't see an opening to move into, you are better doing nothing that simply attacking for the sake of fighting.


Subscribe to RSS - Sun Tzu's Methods