I had heard about John Boyd’s legendary Patterns of Conflict before I read his biography. But I had never seen it so I went on a quest to find it!
Regular readers will know that I have an interest in military history. (See How to improve morale and confidence and Interview with Stephen Bungay.) I’m reading an excellent biography of John Boyd (Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War) at the moment and this has really got me thinking.
Boyd: Patterns of Conflict presentation
Sun Tzu’s Art of War is sometimes read as a business manual. There are some who think that John Boyd was the Sun Tzu of our age. His Patterns of conflict presentation was a six-hour briefing that was hugely influential in American military circles.
I found a version of his masterwork, the Patterns of conflict briefing.
Review of Boyd: The Fighter Pilot who Changed the Art of War
Colonel John Boyd (USAF) told people that they had a choice: they could be somebody or they could do something. Being somebody meant playing by the rules and getting promoted. Doing something was John Boyd's speciality.
With no power but his convictions, he was a revolutionary. For example, he changed air combat, instigated the F-16 fighter programme, overturned Marine Corps tactics and inspired the war-winning strategy during the first Gulf War.
Robert Coram’s Boyd biography (Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War) is a well-written story of how he did it. Not only for aviation enthusiasts and military historians (who must read it), this book is interesting to a general audience. As a result, I think it is particularly useful for managers.