|Sun Tzu said:
56. Bestow rewards without regard to rule, issue orders without regard to
previous arrangements; and you will be able to handle a whole army as though you
had to do with but a single man.
||If you give rewards
where they are expected, you just create a sense of entitlement.
When you give rewards where they are not expected, you create
surprise and delight. You also underline your absolute authority.
Changing your mind is the officer's prerogative. It can be dangerous
to think that once you have issued an order that it cannot be
countermanded. Changing even for its own sake can also be used to
keep the army on its toes.
When everyone is now waiting on your next uncertain action, you
have attention. When they know reward can easily be given, they wait
|57. Confront your soldiers with the deed itself; never let them know your
design. When the outlook is bright, bring it before their eyes; but tell them
nothing when the situation is gloomy.
||When a deed is done
or to be done immediately, there is no time for debate or dissent.
It must be accepted.
Emotions go in spirals, up or down. When
people are feeling generally positive, they will see your plans in a
positive light. When they are gloomy, they will be pessimistic.
|58. Place your army in deadly peril, and it will survive; plunge it into
desperate straits, and it will come off in safety.
||You see the best of
people and armies when they have their backs to the wall and there
is no options but to fight or otherwise face peril with a total
|59. For it is precisely when a force has fallen into harm's way that is
capable of striking a blow for victory.
||The arousal that
threat naturally creates can turn an average army into a powerful
Being able to create and manage such situations is a mark of a
clever general. In particular, when
Fight-or-Flight is triggered, the skill is ensuring that only
fight is chosen.