46. Therefore, on dispersive ground, I would inspire my men with unity of purpose. On facile ground, I would see that there is close connection between all parts of my army.

是故散地吾將一其志輕地吾將使之屬

Sun Tzu

When fighting on their own home turf the advice to “inspire my men with unity of purpose” means that the commander should work to unify and motivate their troops in order to maintain cohesion and morale during the campaign. This might involve providing clear goals and objectives for the campaign, as well as ensuring that all members of the military understand their role in achieving those goals. It might also involve measures to boost morale, such as providing adequate supplies and support to the troops and communicating regularly with them to ensure that they feel connected to the overall mission.

Where the commander’s forces have penetrated into hostile territory, but not to a great distance, the commander should work to maintain close communication and coordination among all parts of their army in order to take advantage of the favorable terrain conditions. This might involve ensuring that all units are aware of each other’s movements and positions, as well as maintaining clear lines of communication and ensuring that all units are supplied and supported as needed.

In business, when on dispersive ground, I would inspire my teams with unity of purpose. On facile ground, I would see that there is a close connection between all of my teams.

In the context of business, “dispersive ground” means a market in which a company is well established. In this situation, to “inspire my teams with unity of purpose” could be interpreted as a recommendation for the company’s leadership to take steps to unify and motivate their teams in order to maintain cohesion to defend their presence in the market. It is common for businesses to become too comfortable and neglect markets in which they are well established, leading to a dispersed and potentially disconnected presence. By inspiring their teams with a sense of unity and purpose, the company’s leadership can help to maintain morale and cohesion, ensuring that the company is able to effectively defend its market position against potential challenges.

This might involve clarifying the goals and objectives for the business in this market, as well as ensuring that all members of the team understand their role in achieving those goals. It might also involve measures to boost morale, such as providing support and resources to the teams and communicating regularly with them to ensure that they feel connected to the overall mission of the company. By inspiring their teams with a sense of unity and purpose, the company’s leadership can help to maintain morale and cohesion during the campaign, which may be particularly important in the face of challenges such as intense competition or a dispersed customer base.

On “facile ground,” which is a market in which the company has a limited presence, the business’s leadership must maintain a close connection between all teams. This includes clear communication and coordination among everyone in order to take advantage of opportunities in the new market. This might involve ensuring that all teams are aware of each other’s activities and are working towards the same goals, as well as maintaining clear lines of communication and ensuring that all teams are supplied and supported as needed. By maintaining close connection between all of their teams, the company’s leadership can help to ensure that the business is able to effectively leverage its limited presence in the new market and achieve success.