Thursday, 3 May 2012

Murdoch, The Media & The Art of War

Success demands an understanding and practical application of the pian (chapters) proposed in Sun Tzu's 孫子兵法. Mr. Murdoch (herein after 'the Master') is obviously a studied practitioner of the Art.
  1. Plan- Having been given a lengthy time to assess the allegations and apply due consideration, the Master has had the latitude / leeway to calculate his best chances of victory. 
  2. The Challenge- the Master's successful campaign requires the limitation of  the cost of competition and conflict. Accepting personal blame limits further conflict / interrogation / discovery and deflects conflict away from the business. 
  3. Attack by Stratagem- Powerful 'friends' pursuing personal interests openly support the Master, a definition of 'independent' opinion and the epitome of unity rather than defiance via legal strong-arm tactics pillared by limitless company funding.
  4. Positioning- In the first hearing the Master defends & denies, successfully buying time to consider his options before advancing in relative safety (ie: for the Company). The Master has recognized and seized a strategic opportunity, deflated the "enemy's" contention through a process of self-imposed blame and squashed any further opportunities of attack - conflict averted.
  5. Directing- Who can credit the Master's (hitherto bombastic and arrogant) creativity and timing  in shameful acquiescence of personal blame. By anyone's definition completely out of character.
  6. Illusion and Reality- having diverted the conflict away from the Company by assuming personal blame, the Master creates the illusion of personally-imposed regulatory deviance rather than Company non-compliance. This cleverly engineered change of environment* provides the Company the legitimacy it doesn't necessarily deserve. (*Who will discredit the Master's intended illusion of Company-innocence given his undisputed history of interference. The Master's age wraps the illusion nicely for only an old dog loses the will to bite..)
  7. Manoeuvering- the Master has understood the dangers to the Company and has avoided further conflict by interposing himself between the process of discovery and the Company
  8. Variation in Tactics- the Master's flexibility and change of tactic from outright denial to an unexpected, unequivocal acceptance of personal blame is wholly successful. The Company remains intact.  
  9. Moving The Force- the Master currently waits for the 'enemy's' next move. Any new allegations will be carefully evaluated and referred back to 'Planning' for response. 
  10. The Use of Intelligence - the Master will CONTINUE to develop good sources of information / intelligence for, one reason and one reason only; Success depends upon it.

Global corporate management is full of artful deflection. Knowing why is the key to your own success...