Strategy can turn a losing battle into a winning battle

Once upon a time, in a battle, a king was facing depleting
resources. His army commander reported that only few
arrows remained. The king sought the advice of the war

The strategist asked the soldiers to stand together in a
rectangular box formation. Then he asked the soldiers in the
front rank to hold their wooden shields in front of them; the
middle ranks to hold their wooden shields on top of them,
and the side ranks to hold their wooden shields on their
sides. This formation created a very large wooden box,
which was covered in the front, top, and the sides, without
any gaps remaining in between. Then he instructed the
soldiers to march forwards towards the enemy, and as soon
as the enemy started shooting arrows, they had to march
backwards and come back.

As the wooden box made by the soldiers approached the
enemy, the enemy archers started raining arrows, which got
embedded in the wooden shields. The soldiers as instructed
by the strategist marched backwards. Seeing the soldiers
retreating, the enemy stopped raining arrows and rejoiced
their victory. The soldiers marched backwards and safely
reached their camp, without any casualties. When they
arrived, the strategist asked the soldiers to remove the
embedded arrows from their wooden shields. This way, the
strategist obtained several hundreds of arrows from the
enemy. Thereafter, using those same arrows against the
enemy, the king launched a full fledged attack and the enemy
was totally defeated.

Excerpt from the book “Once Upon A Time: 100 Management Stories” by Rajen Jani

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