What is the value of an informed decision? At OODA Loop, we seek to surface decision intelligence that provides meaningful perspective for leaders and analysts looking to make the most informed decisions possible. The topics examined in this assessment represent developments that fit the category of operating in a VUCA world, identifying and responding to Gray Rhino risks, or opportunities from advancements in emerging technology domains. These are issues we think our members should be tracking and map to collection requirements for our team to keep you as informed as possible.
Sir David Omand is one of the most respected intelligence professionals in the world and author of the book How Spies Think: Ten lessons in intelligence. His career in intelligence began shortly after graduating from Cambridge in 1969 when he joined the UK’s GCHQ (Government Communications Headquarters). He would later become the director of GCHQ. He also served as the first UK Security and Intelligence Coordinator, the most senior intelligence, counter-terror and homeland security position in the UK.
In this OODAcast we discuss lessons in leadership from his time in the intelligence service and his views on the current threat environment, including threats to nations, corporations and citizens of the free world. We also examine how his time in intelligence informed his own models for understanding and analyzing complex situations and how this motivated him to write How Spies Think.
Fine Tuning Your Falsehood Detector: Time to update the models you use to screen for deception, dishonesty, corruption, fraud and falsity
The best business leaders are good at spotting falsehoods. Some joke and say they have a “bullshit detector”, but that humorous description does not do service to the way great leaders detect falsehoods. Bullshit is easy to detect. You see it and smell it and if you step in it it is your own fault. In the modern world falsehoods are far more nuanced.
Now more than ever, business and government leaders need to ensure their mental models for detecting falsehood are operating in peak condition.
Now more than ever, organizations need to apply rigorous thought to business risks and opportunities. In doing so it is useful to understand the concepts embodied in the terms Black Swan and Gray Rhino. This post examines both and leads to recommended action plans for any organization in government or business who seeks to mitigate risk while focusing on opportunity.
We strongly encourage every company, large or small, to set aside dedicated time to focus on ways to improve your ability to understand the nature of the significantly changed risk environment we are all operating in today, and then assess how your organizational thinking should change.
As an aid to assessing your corporate sensemaking abilities, this post summarizes OODA’s research and analysis into optimizing corporate intelligence for the modern age.
Something is different in the geopolitical situation today. The reasons are probably a combination of factors that include the pandemic, the rise of the global grid of cyberspace, plus the payoff of years of planning and strategic moves by our adversaries. But whatever the reasons, the world today is more complicated and more dangerous than the world of just a year ago, and in many cases the risks being faced by open societies have never been seen before. The changes are so significant, OODA recommends all business leaders take stock of the geopolitical situation and assess how the nature of these changes should impact your business strategy.
“The world is a more dangerous and complicated place than it was just a year ago. Your corporate strategy and defensive posture needs to reflect that”
Kathy and Randy Pherson are authors of the book Critical Thinking for Strategic Intelligence. Both had successful careers in the US Intelligence Community. While they were at the CIA they pioneered new methods of risk analysis and analytical methods, and helped bring those methods to widespread adoption in the community. Both are also successful business leaders who created companies that build value for others. Their focus in business is on helping others improve their analytical methods. They write about and teach best practices in analysis.
This is the third post in our special series on the Intelligent Enterprise. The first, titled, A Practitioner’s View of Corporate Intelligence, provided foundational insights to kickstart any corporate intelligence program. The second, titled Optimizing Corporate Intelligence, provided best practices and actionable information you can use to improve and professionalize your corporate intelligence activities. This post discusses standards in intelligence, a topic that can improve the quality of all corporate intelligence efforts and do so while reducing ambiguity in the information used to drive decisions and enhancing the ability of corporations to defend their most critical information.
This post is part of our Intelligent Enterprise series, which providing insights aimed at corporate strategists seeking competitive advantage through better and more accurate decision-making. The first post provided foundational insights into A Practitioner’s View of Corporate Intelligence. This one dives into actionable recommendation on ways to optimize a corporate intelligence effort. It is based on a career serving large scale analytical efforts in the US Intelligence Community and in applying principles of intelligence in corporate America.
This post is part of a series providing insights aimed at corporate strategists seeking competitive advantage through better and more accurate decision-making.
Organizations in competitive environments should continually look for ways to gain advantage over their competitors. The ability of a business to learn and translate that learning into action, at speeds faster than others, is one of the most important competitive advantages you can have. This fact of business life is why the model of success in Air to Air combat articulated by former Air Force fighter pilot John Boyd, the Observe – Orient – Decide – Act (OODA) decision loop, is so relevant in business decision-making today.
In this business model, decisions are based on observations of dynamic situations tempered with business context to drive decisions and actions. These actions should change the situation meaning new observations and new decisions and actions will follow. This all underscores the need for a good corporate intelligence program.