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Military strategy for the corporate world

Red Teaming

Red Teaming

by Bryce G. Hoffman

Red Teaming: How to Succeed By Thinking Like the Enemy

Red Teaming is a revolutionary new way to make critical and contrarian thinking part of the planning process of any organization, allowing companies to stress-test their strategies, flush out hidden threats and missed opportunities and avoid being sandbagged by competitors.

Red teaming cha...

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  • Red teaming makes critical and contrarian thinking part of your company’s planning process and gives you a set of tools and techniques that can be used to stress-test your strategy. 
  • Red teaming helps you better understand your customers and your competitors. 
  • Red teaming hel...

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Good leaders know that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with conflict. 

Dealing with conflict lies at the heart of managing any business. As a result, confrontation—facing issues about which there is disagreement—can be avoided only at the manager’s peril. The issue can be put off, it c...

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In a business setting, a red team will be most effective when it reports directly to the CEO and enjoys his or her full support. In practice, that will not always be possible. Red teams can still be effective when they report to the head of a department or division, as long as their scope is limi...

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Even when red team members conduct themselves blamelessly, it can still be a challenge to get the entire organization to embrace red teaming and take the red team’s recommendations to heart. In the military, resistance to red teaming has come largely from officers who do not fully underst...

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It is counterproductive for a red team to analyze every decision an organization makes. Constant red teaming can be stressful and demoralizing for employees who have their every move questioned and challenged. That is not the point of red teaming, nor is it an effective use of red teams.

A ...

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A Red team cannot become a routine and should always challenge itself. It should always encourage its members to voice different perspectives and conflicting views.

Mixing up the way the team uses those tools and techniques is also a good idea. If you approach every problem the same way, yo...

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A Red Team that is always wrong will never be taken seriously. Its warnings will be ignored. Its reports will go unread. Its members will lose their credibility. For that reason, red teams do need to pay attention to their track record and make sure that they hit the ball out of the park, at leas...

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Many companies like simple solutions that do not require too much effort to implement. They prefer short-term fixes that offer immediate results, even if they do little to address the underlying problem. They are less interested in long-term solutions that require a coordinated effort to implemen...

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Red teaming is all about rigorous questioning and thinking unconventionally. Red teams consist of people who’ve proven to be contrarian thinkers. 

These are the three phases of a typical red teaming exercise:

  • Using analytical tools to question the arguments and assumptions that t...

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  • Restating a problem and re-examining the same.
  • Encouraging writing the problem and the solution(s).
  • Dissecting an argument, which involves asking a number of questions of any argument that is used to justify a particular course of action, or that is offered as an explanation ...

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