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Chapter 1: Laying Plans

cowardice. They embody virtue and courage, marching into hostile territory. They enforce discipline and punish insubordination. Their strictness instills fear and respect. They assign duties fairly.

Method and Discipline – These elements help leaders avoid disorganization in their teams. According to Sun Tzu, proper method and discipline keep highways clear, prevent delays, and lead to victory. The best leaders divide their teams into proper ranks and subdivisions and rule them with iron command.

Sun Tzu also describes the importance of never underestimating your enemy.

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Chapter 3: Attack By Strategem

According to Sun Tzu, the five best characteristics of any leader are:

Knowing when and when not to fight

Knowing how to handle superior and inferior forces

Being the person whose entire army rallies behind them with the same fighting spirit in every rank, from the most experien...

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Chapter 8: Variation of Tactics

Dangerous faults in leaders that result in failure include:

Recklessness, which leads to destruction;

Cowardice, which leads to capture;

A hasty temper, which leads to being vulnerable to attacks (so don’t be easily angered by insults from the enemy);

A “delicacy of honor,...

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Chapter 6: Weak Points and Strong

If you must fight, confuse your enemies with unexpected routes or gambits such as suddenly modifying your tactics. This is crucial (and far easier) if attacked in your own territory. In real life, never let those around you know your next move.

Sun Tzu also teaches the importance of caring ...

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Chapter 5: Energy

The lesson? As a leader, you must combine the resources you have and form “variations” to come up with unlimited strategies. Use the “combined energy” of your team to aid in victory.

Sun Tzu also recommends using a combination of direct and indirect attacks to forge a limitless number of wa...

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Chapter 1: Laying Plans

Moral Law – Moral law also known as the mission. It’s a unifying cause that helps armies follow leaders without question. Through moral law, you create common ground with your troops so they remain disciplined and follow you into battle, even if death is imminent.

Heaven and Earth – You kno...

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Chapter 7: Maneuvering

Sun Tzu mentions limiting the ground your army covers to preserve its strength. When your army must cover large distances, take breaks to have enough strength to defend against attacks. A tired army with low morale never wins battles.

Sun Tzu also states, “We are not fit to lead an army on ...

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Chapter 4 Tactical Dispositions

To prepare for victory and war, Sun Tzu recommends:

Measurement of budget, time, effort, the enemy’s soldiers;

Estimation of quantity (supplies, money, soldiers);

Calculation of the your and your enemy’s strength;

Balancing chances – What are the odds of you winning?); and...

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Chapter 2: Waging War

In this chapter, Sun Tzu reminds us that… “There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare.”

Sun Tzu valued rapid victories over extended confrontations. Rapid victory is the essence of war.

To apply this concept to your life, think about how much effort it t...

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The Art of War is THE classic guide to military strategy that has inspired soldiers, politicians and business leaders worldwide for millennia. Its timeless (and time-tested) lessons in out thinking and outflanking your adversaries are as valuable in the boardroom as on the battlefield - by Chinese Qi Dynasty military general and master strategist, Sun Tzu

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