Theory Alone?

“It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.”     Richard P. Feynman —

Almost anyone can start with a wonderful theory or a good idea.  People often associate the original design of a strategy as being “the” solution.  A “genius” can spew them out at any time.  The plan is written, their theory is the way.  But, how would they know?  

The experiment or application of the theory is the real work of strategy.  The  theory is nothing more than a supposed game plan to follow.  No one can predict the future or what barriers or even new opportunities that they will come across.  You must walk through the experiment.  You must learn from it and apply what you are learning with decisive corrections to reach success.

Before every game, a good coach has a theory or game plan on how they might defeat the other team in a contest.  Having the best game plan is a wonderful advantage as it sets a direction for you to go and aligns a purpose with others for going there.  However, a good theory/strategy doesn’t guarantee a win (even with an inferior foe).   The game is the experiment for the great coach.  The game has to be played to determine who is more successful.  The strategy must be applied and the team who learns to alter the theory within the contest will set a better course and they  will win.

Leadership is certainly about aspirations and working with a group of people toward that shared purpose to accomplish something, to make something better, and to work with others to get there.  The merit of a leader is earned when accomplishment is attained in the applied learning and adaptive execution of the strategy, not by design of the theory by itself.  


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