Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Business and Battle

“War is hell! “ the old general says as he surveys the smoldering battlefield and then turns away puffing on his cigar, looking old as he walks back to his jeep.

Business is like war too. It may not be as bloody, but it is no less competitive, no less stressful, no less cutthroat, no less demanding, no less intense and certainly no less about taking no prisoners.

The one thing that is more difficult about business is that most battles are highly intense for very short periods of time. Intense, deadly and very quick. Most over in a matter of seconds or minutes.

Forays into the business markets last longer and carry on with all the negative effects of battle prolonged for various periods of time. In the battle you win or lose, survive or die in a matter of seconds or minutes or even hours but rarely days and weeks. In business you can struggle for weeks, months and years.

In battle the fight is external against a known enemy (you may not know where they are, but you know who they are). In business you may or may not know your enemy, and that enemy can be either inside or outside your business.

Not sure about inside your business? How many different agenda’s do you run across in your business?. Each of those is a little struggle unto itself, a battle if you will.

Everyone, everyday has to produce to a target either by individual or by team. Do so, and the battle will be with your competitors and the market. Fail to do so, and the battle comes home to validate the very survival or existence of your department, your team, your plant or your product.

Here are some rules to keep in mind (SOF Rules):
●Take the initiative. Don’t wait for answers from the top, they are probably not available.
●Things are rarely fair. Don’t count on the exception.
●Truth changes. The first report is always suspect.
●Expect the unexpected. Anticipate and prepare.
●Plan and prepare as if there were no rules.
●Always preserve your freedom of action.
●Never make decisions that box you in.

Also, I would encourage you to go and subscribe to one of my favorite newsletters, “The Art of Corporate Warfare” at (http://parconresearch.com/corpwar/) . The reading will be thought provoking and support your battles.

Keep your head down, and Fight the Good Fight!


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