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OODA Loop

I’m a big fan of using Colonel John Boyd’s OODA Loop strategy for reacting to events in business.

I’m so into the OODA Loop theory that I once chanted “OODA, OODA” (like “Toga, Toga”) at a strategy session!

OODA stands for:

Observe — As in collect the inputs/data of the situation.

Orient — Analyze the inputs/data to determine your position.

Decide — Determine your course of action.

Act — Execute your decision.

It’s called an OODA Loop (or OODA Cycle) because the event/situation taking place may be changing and so you may have to change your decisions as new data/inputs are gathered.

While Col. John Boyd’s OODA Loops were created in military situations, he made recommendations on their use in business (and OODA Loop Theory is widely used in business today).

For example, Boyd recommended that decisions/actions be distributed throughout a business organization so that decisions and actions are made by the people who are directly observing and oriented to a situation (as opposed to an isolated commander/CEO who is only indirectly involved).

Colonel John R. Boyd is no relation to famous businessman John Boyd Dunlop who founded Dunlop the tire company or peace nobelist Lord John Boyd (United Nations, nutrition).

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