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Sun Tzu For Execution: How to Use the Art of War to Get Results Paperback – January 19, 2007
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About the Author
Steven W. Michaelson is President of FreshDirect, the fast growing NY area online retailer. Steve's career spreads over a variety of operations, marketing, merchandising, sales, and other leadership roles. Steve is the co-author of several books on Sun Tzu including Sun Tzu for Success.
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Quite properly, he places greatest emphasis (as does Sun Tzu) on effective execution by whatever means necessary, preferably under most favorable conditions. In the Introduction, Michaelson shares an anecdote that reveals how Sun Tzu reputedly achieved specific objective. "The king gave Sun Tzu his 100 concubines and challenged him to apply his theories and practices of training soldiers to managing the concubines. The concubines, as you might expect, were untrained in the matters of marching and drills and performed poorly. Sun Tzu decided to try a more decisive tactic - he beheaded the king's favorite concubine. The rest of the concubines, realizing that Sun Tzu was, indeed, serious about having his directives carried out, immediately began to execute his orders exceedingly well."
Granted, this is a somewhat extreme example of "execution," especially given today's preoccupation with "empowering" employees, a term which - by the way - makes me feel as if my body were covered with caterpillars. However, Sun Tzu's action did achieve the desired objective. Credit Michaelson with providing a lively, thoughtful, and practical analysis of a classic source, The Art of War.
Dr. Faron Boreham