The Nimble Hippo: How to innovate like a fighter pilot
John Boyd is widely regarded as the person who pioneered the design of modern military jet fighters in the 20th century. His theories led to the Lightweight Fighter program (LWF), based on his Energy-Manoeuvrability (E-M) Theory, which states that excessive weight would have debilitating consequences for manoeuvrability of an aircraft. At the time it was controversial as the pilot would have to sacrifice key elements, such as speed and weaponry, to optimize agility.
The other significant framework Boyd developed was the OODA Loop. This is the process by which an entity (an individual or an organization) reacts to an event. According to this idea, the key to victory is to be able to create situations in which one can make appropriate decisions more quickly than one’s opponent.
What is interesting is how easily these military tactics can be applied to business, and why startup tactics can be so powerful when applied to large organizations. Let’s dive into a few aspects of this. As the OODA Loop states, the organizations that can create situations that allow them to make the best decisions as quickly as possible are the ones that win. Let’s translate that into business talk.
By Patrick Edwin Moran –