If Sun Tzu were alive today, he might be surprised at how popular he is. His teaching The Art of War now circulates around the world in over 15 languages. It’s been a while since The Art Of War by Sun Tzu was written, but the wisdom found inside are still truths today that you can apply to all aspects of life. One of the reasons you need to read it for yourself is that the ideas inside can help you within the scope of business and negotiation.
Cutting Through The Competition: The Art Of War In Business
Though most of the contexts are military, they are very much applicable in the world of business and marketing. Below are some of the business lessons from “The Art of War” book by Sun Tzu:
1. Defeat your opponent by strategy and flexibility
In the art of war book; Sun Tzu made us understand that our competitive objective should be to conquer our competitors by strategy, not by conflict because conflict may ultimately benefit no one.
He also highlighted that overcoming competition requires careful and detailed planning, clear business strategy and proper strategic management. Flexibility entails responding quickly to changing factors such as economic, environmental and political factors. It also entails aligning swiftly or taking advantage of emerging trends.
“No plan survives contact with the enemy.” – Sun Tzu
Your overall business strategy must be flexible and opportunistic with respect to the prevailing situation. That means you must constantly review your strategies and make the necessary adjustments. You must also not be static with respect to your strategic plan and you must take certain decisions quickly.
2. Divide your opponent’s attention
“Intentional confusion is the strategy of moving in circles without any apparent direction.” – Sun Tzu
This is the second lesson I picked up from the art of war. You must look for smart ways to divert your enemy’s attention while you are making your strategic moves. For instance, when you are developing a new product or when you want to launch one, try to strategically divert your competitor’s attention.
3. Use competitive information
“Know your enemies and above all, know yourself.” – Sun Tzu
“Accurate information is the foundation of profitable operations.” – Sun Tzu
You probably must have watched the news on TV today? Have you taught about the information you heard on the news? Did you analyze the information you obtained from TV to find out if that information will affect your business positively or negatively?
“Succeeding in a direct engagement on a competitor depends on deceiving him. If your stratagems are obvious to your enemies, no matter how good they are; you will be defeated.” – Sun Tzu
Information can be a competitive advantage for your business depending on how fast you apply it. Mind you that Information is not power but its strategic application is power. You must always strive to get information and use it to your advantage.
4. Forge a team with singleness of purpose and commitment
When building a business, you must bring your employees together as one family. Your business must become their business.
“Treat your men well, and train them thoroughly.” – Sun Tzu
Your ability to forge a team out of your employees makes you a good business leader. You must unite your team to act with singleness of purpose. They must be committed to your course. They must understand your business mission and vision. If they can’t envision the future with you; they are not worth being your team.
5. Utilize your strengths at full capacity
Sun Tzu in the art of war explains that to defeat the enemy, you must discover your strengths and utilize that strength of your at full capacity. You have to give your business everything thing you’ve got to keep it going.
6. Exploit the weakness of your competitors
“Before entering an engagement, study your enemies closely.” – Sun Tzu
Learn to spot loopholes and weaknesses within and without your business environment because this singular factor can be a big competitive advantage for you. You must train your eyes to see opportunities that others cannot see. Sun Tzu taught me to utilize my strengths at full capacity. But where do I apply this strength of mine to obtain maximum result? This was Sun Tzu’s answer; “to obtain maximum effectiveness, you must use your strengths at full capacity to exploit your competitor’s weakness.”
All in all, you can make use of the knowledge you acquire on all the books that you read but the money and time it takes to start and run a business in Sydney Australia varies greatly. This plays a big part in franchise success.