Small Wars Journal

planning

“The Only Problem with the Operations Planning Process is that We Don’t Use It!”: Why this Argument is Invalid SWJED Tue, 05/28/2019 - 1:37pm
Over the years I have heard time and again the argument made that “the only problem with the operations planning process is that we don’t use it!” Often this argument is made at a staff college by some “greybeard” or other, although I have also heard it made by other less venerable staff and on occasion even by students of such institutions. It is usually offered as a reason why no reform, change, or update is required to whichever operations planning process is under discussion.

In Case of Emergency - Don’t Panic, Plan

If we want to increase the chances of our missions succeeding, we must first understand the complexity of what we are dealing with and plan accordingly. Moreover, we need to treat planning not as a one-time activity but as an ongoing, iterative affair that is responsive to the continual and multifaceted changes characteristic of complex crises.

About the Author(s)

Help the Plan Survive Contact: Write Better Decisive Conditions SWJED Tue, 09/26/2017 - 8:48am

If we have our decisive conditions wrong, we will construct the wrong effects and wrong measurements.  It doesn’t matter how good our actions may be.

Three Design Concepts Introduced for Strategic and Operational Applications

Design thinker and frequent contributor to Small Wars Journal, Major Ben Zweibelson has been published in the recent issue of National Defense University’s PRISM journal. His article, titled “Three Design Concepts Introduced for Strategic and Operational Applications” (p. 87) may look familiar to SWJ readers that follow Ben’s design work. He based this most recent article on his previous design articles published here at Small Wars Journal. Ben expressed to our editors that many of the concepts in this new article were made possible by the many helpful and insightful comments by SWJ readers on Ben’s previous articles published here. Small Wars Journal is encouraged to see fellow military publications engaging in the continuing design debate over concepts, methodology, and application in strategic and operational situations.