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Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr. looks on as Staff Sgt. David Ahn, Kessel Run 3D program manager, demonstrates how to fix code in minutes versus days during a tour of Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Detachment 12, Kessel Run, at their headquarters in Boston, Feb. 16.


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Virtual Seats Now Available for Open Workshops in October 2021string;#/News/Virtual-Seats-Now-Available-for-Open-Workshops-in-October-2021Virtual Seats Now Available for Open Workshops in October 20212021-09-24T12:00:00Z - News Banner - Open Workshops.png, - News Banner - Open Workshops.png - News Banner - Open Workshops.png<div class="ExternalClassEA367280F055482DBF2112DBEB8766B7"><p>DAU workshops are incredible opportunities to quickly learn about a specific subject and leave with actionable products and information. While we normally present these in small-team formats, it's not always possible to get everyone together even though your program could still benefit from the information and tools provided in our workshops. Our new Open Workshops bridge that gap by offering individuals from different programs and organizations a chance to come together as a team and undergo a DAU workshop while networking with like-minded peers -- plus, you'll walk away with actionable skills that you can apply directly to your program. Seating for these workshops is extremely limited, so register early!</p> <p><strong>Registration is now open for workshops in October, but seats are extremely limited.</strong><br> <br> <strong>WSA 001 DEVSECOPS for the DoD: Fundamentals</strong><br> <em>Provides of overview of DevSecOps in the DoD</em><br> <a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"></a><br> <br> <strong>WSA 004 Cloud Services Workshop</strong><br> <em>An in-depth exploration of cloud services and information to manage and migrate organizations to cloud environments</em><br> <a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"></a><br> <br> <strong>WSC 005 Source Selection</strong><br> <em>Provides an overview of the source selection process, which applies to competitive negotiated acquisitions per Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Subpart 15.3 Source Selection, the Defense FAR Supplement Subpart 215.3, and the mandatory DoD Source Selection Procedures, including: reducing potential of protest in a source selection, awarding a superior contract in less time, recognizing the best value proposal for an award.</em><br> <a href=""></a><br> <br> <strong>WSL 008 Supply Chain Management</strong><br> <em>Understand tactical and strategic sourcing and counterfeit parts in the supply chain</em><br> <a href=""></a><br> <br> <strong>WSS 007 Cyber Table Top</strong><br> <em>Create a Threat-Surface attack characterization and CTT Methodology to perform cybersecurity risk management across the DoD acquisition lifecycle</em><br> <a href=""></a><br> <br> <strong>WSS 010 Cyber Training Range</strong><br> <em>Provides hands on laboratory exploration of adversarial cyber threats to DOD networks and weapon systems. Students will learn and execute (in the lab environment) basic offensive cyber techniques, develop system requirements to defeat the threats, implement countermeasures and assess countermeasures effectiveness.</em><br> <a href=""></a></p></div>string;#/News/Virtual-Seats-Now-Available-for-Open-Workshops-in-October-2021
DAU Articles on Instagramstring;#/News/InstagramDAU Articles on Instagram2021-09-16T16:00:00Z - IG Banner for DAUEDU News.png, - IG Banner for DAUEDU News.png - IG Banner for DAUEDU News.png<div class="ExternalClassC818D94035754DEC82BDDABCB342D460"><table border="0" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="10" style="width:720px;"> <tbody> <tr> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/How-to-Accelerate-Change-in-Your-Program-Office"><img alt="" src="/library/defense-atl/PublishingImages/DefAcq_Sep_21_banner01.jpg" style="width:350px;height:105px;" /></a></td> <td style="width:10px;"> </td> <td> <h3><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/revisiting-john-boyd"><img alt="" src="/library/defense-atl/PublishingImages/DefAcq_Sep_21_banner02.jpg" style="width:350px;height:105px;" /></a></h3> </td> </tr> <tr> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/How-to-Accelerate-Change-in-Your-Program-Office">How to Accelerate Change in Your Program Office</a></td> <td> </td> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/revisiting-john-boyd">Revisiting John Boyd and the OODA Loop in Our Time of Transformation</a></td> </tr> <tr> <td style="width:350px;"> </td> <td> </td> <td> </td> </tr> <tr> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/The-Magic-of-Delegation-and-Empowerment"><img alt="" src="/library/defense-atl/PublishingImages/DefAcq_Sep_21_banner03.jpg" style="width:350px;height:105px;" /></a></td> <td> </td> <td> <h3><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/DoDs-Small-Business"><img alt="" src="/library/defense-atl/PublishingImages/DefAcq_Sep_21_banner04.jpg" style="width:350px;height:105px;" /></a></h3> </td> </tr> <tr> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/The-Magic-of-Delegation-and-Empowerment">The Magic of Delegation and Empowerment</a></td> <td> </td> <td><a href="/library/defense-atl/blog/DoDs-Small-Business">DoD’s Small-Business Innovation Research —How It Contributes to the Defense Mission</a></td> </tr> <tr> <td> </td> <td> </td> <td> <h3> </h3> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <h4> </h4> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <h4> </h4></div>string;#/News/Instagram



How to Accelerate Change in Your Program Office to Accelerate Change in Your Program Office2021-10-11T16:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass9B72E4EF1AC24FB39659E00E49C36681">The Secretary of the Air Force’s challenge to “accelerate change” marks yet another call from the highest levels of military leadership to fundamentally reconsider how we provide warfighting capability. As we previously observed in the May-June issue of Defense Acquisition, it is crucial to understand the distinctions and synergies between innovation, speed, and agility if we are to institute meaningful organizational change. However, precise terminology does not necessarily translate into decisive action. Organizational change is thoroughly studied in business contexts—a search on for books with the word “innovation” in the title yielded more than 60,000 results. Appending terms like agility, team performance, and risk to that search expands the potential reading list to a truly daunting magnitude that would take many lifetimes to consume.<br> <br> Fortunately, one needs only to read a handful of the most celebrated thinkers on these topics to realize that they have all arrived at a similar constellation of ideas. Though some of the books are new, the major themes for creating a high-performing organizational culture are not. Gen. Bill Creech tackled a similar cultural challenge with the transformation of Tactical Air Command (TAC) in the 1970s and 1980s. Current Department of Defense (DoD) agile and high-innovation organizations still list similar principles as critical to their culture and their success. These organizations include the Joint Special Operations Command (and more broadly, U.S. Special Operations Command), AFWERX, the Defense Innovation Unit, the Rapid Capabilities Office, and numerous others. But it can be difficult for managers to see how these old lessons, visible in the practices of boutique acquisition shops, can be applied in their acquisition offices.<br> <br> This article aims to guide perplexed acquirers, especially middle managers in traditional acquisition offices, by summarizing major themes in prevailing literature on organizational change into seven tailored “axioms” that recommend concrete action for increased speed, agility, and innovation. Want to accelerate change in your program office?<br> <br> Take the following steps.<br> <br> <img alt="a hand holding a glowing cube" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/defacq-datl_septoct2021_article1_image01.jpg" style="width:500px;height:123px;" /> <h3>Use cross-functional teams to solve problems.</h3> The scope and complexity of individual fields like contracting, logistics, and cyber security require specialization and expertise that is best brought to bear through broad functional collaboration on tight-knit, outcome-focused, teams. These teams are dubbed Integrated Product Teams (IPTs) in government work, or Cross-Functional Teams (CFTs) in industry. While this first axiom may appear obvious, if not trite, it is common to find program offices that do not employ an IPT structure. Many offices merely identify team membership on paper, and some do not even go that far. Acquisition “centers” sometimes separate IPT functions into homogenous silos that are intended to service the entire organization, ostensibly reducing manpower costs. However, this separation makes interactions fewer and unnecessarily formal, reduces mission buy-in, and increases friction. Execution of program managers’ (PM) plans is made more difficult by the sparse interaction with these functional experts, and the functionals are frustrated by the PMs’ inability to provide timely information. The resulting formalized iterations cost time and money.<br> <br> Consider that few of the high-performing teams mentioned above are structured in a stovepiped manner. Instead, many use a Skunk Works-style model wherein the lawyer, logistician, contracting officer, PM, and security officer (to name a few) sit physically close to each other. These personnel are assigned to work only a few projects, and the frequent team interactions force almost instantaneous planning iterations, limiting administrative churn, and increasing speed and agility. Personal familiarity and physical proximity also foster trust, which is a crucial enabler of speed, agility, and innovation. Breaking up functional stovepipes serves the triple benefit of placing expertise where it belongs (on the IPT), eliminating administrative strata, and allowing the PM to balance the huge range of program considerations against commanders’ tolerance for risk.<br> <br> <strong>Do this:</strong> Assign names, not functions, to IPTs. Ensure that these people are working a small subset of programs long term. Move teams physically to sit next to each other, and administratively to have the same chain of command.<br> <br> <strong>For more, read:</strong> <a href=""><em>Skunk Works</em> (Ben R. Rich and Leo Janos, 1994)</a> <h3>Push authority down to where the knowledge is.</h3> For most of military history, leadership has been synonymous with decision-making authority. In the modern world characterized by ambiguity, complexity, and speed, we can no longer use the antiquated model of funneling decisions up the chain of command to be made by a single empowered leader. Even if we could afford the bureaucratic delay, we cannot afford the dual tax on quality and trust. Decision quality suffers because those with the most familiarity are in the best position to make trade-offs affecting their work. Trust suffers because centralized decision making sends the message that you are not empowered to run your program. As Gen. Creech frequently noted, empowerment creates ownership which, in turn, creates pride—a determinant pillar of success. Of course, pushing authority down assumes competence on the part of the workforce: Decisions should not be passed down to junior members who lack the basic education and experience to make responsible decisions. The authority should only be pushed down to where the knowledge exists (more on this in axiom Number 4). The authority delegated to the team must be measured and accountable.<br> <br> This strategy does not mean that team leaders should be laissez-faire managers; rather, responsible stewardship empowers leadership to spend time focusing on strategic issues and broadcasting their commander’s intent to inform decisions. Creech understood how empowerment sparked pride and professionalism in TAC teams. Pushing decision-making authority down engenders speed, agility, and innovation through empowerment of those most capable of making decisions quickly.<br> <br> <strong>Do this: </strong>Encourage subordinates to keep you informed of their intentions, not to come to you for decisions. Address “bad” decisions by better communicating strategic intent, not by overruling lower-level managers. In Gen. Creech’s words, “Drive pride and professionalism, humanize the workplace, and provide everyone with a stake in the outcome.”<br> <br> <strong>For more, read: </strong><a href=""><em>Turn the Ship Around! </em>(David Marquet, 2012)</a> <h3>Keep the organization small.</h3> Creech’s saying, “Think big, organize small” applies here. While organizations benefit from a clear command structure, minimize the number of levels in the hierarchy. This lean structure is enabled by the practice of pushing authority down.<br> <br> Conduct the following thought experiment: If an acquisition strategy is a good one, then what value is added by requiring it to be repeatedly approved by a lengthy chain of command? OK, you might ask, but don’t we need middle managers to review IPTs’ decisions and screen out the “bad” ones? Not if we are properly applying the other axioms. If a PM’s strategy is rejected by a senior leader or functional manager, such feedback comes far too late and should have been corrected by knowledgeable IPT members earlier in the plan’s formation. In other words, management strata should be thought of as denial authorities, rather than approval authorities. Former Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology Heidi Shyu likened the effect to driving a bus where every passenger has a “steering wheel and a brake pedal, but no gas pedal.” This thought experiment illustrates that a focus on effective teams, and less on layers of oversight, is more efficient. Relying on your boss as a “red team” is a highly risk-averse structure that might be appropriate in some contexts, but not all.<br> <br> This doesn’t mean that middle management is not needed. While the Rapid Capabilities Office and AFWERX might be able to report their program status directly to the Service Secretary or the Senior Acquisition Executive, this practice probably is not scalable to the entire acquisition enterprise. Leadership in a lean, decentralized environment requires two management functions. First, clear intent must be passed down, and resources provided accordingly to achieve this intent. Second, the manager should foster healthy competition between teams and conduct meaningful measurements, rewarding productivity and innovation, another key tool Gen. Creech used to reinvigorate the TAC. Both functions are bolstered by frequent interactions between PMs and higher levels of leadership (not just when a document requires approval). Creating the environment for success is a key part of the manager’s leadership responsibility.<br> <br> <strong>Do this: </strong>Distribute functional expertise among IPTs and utilize functional enclaves in a “train and assist” function, not an oversight function. Minimize approval layers and ensure that teams are appropriately resourced.<br> <br> <strong>For more, read: </strong><a href=""><em>Speed of Trust </em>(Stephen M.R. Covey, 2008)</a> <h3>Use experts to grow experts.</h3> High-performing teams like the Rapid Capabilities Office, Defense Innovation Unit, and SOFWERX enjoy the benefit of selective hiring that skims the cream from the larger workforce (and industry). These organizations can simply hire experts, which allows them to confidently grant stewardship to aggressively small and flat teams that move with great speed. However, everyone’s career starts somewhere. Leaders should view education and experience as job Number 1 for junior members. Each IPT should include members with various degrees of experience. This structure makes the team slightly larger than it might otherwise be, but still allows delegation to the IPT-level (i.e., “where the knowledge is”). In fact, talent management may be one area where middle managers are most useful. Proximity to daily execution promotes a personal evaluation of competence and allows careful balancing of teams.<br> <br> Never squander opportunities to broaden experience and increase expertise. A senior leader traveling solo to a high-level program review is a tragic waste of organizational insight for both the junior member (who would get to see how strategic decisions are made) and for the boss (who misses a mentorship opportunity). The cost of a few extra airline tickets is minuscule compared to the training value.<br> <br> Perhaps most of all, understand that innovation is a skill that is both teachable, and perishable! It is a misnomer that simply reducing bureaucracy will automatically result in innovation. On the contrary, it requires a new mindset that may be learned through numerous programs like the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, the U.S. Special Operations Command’s Ghost program, or the Air University’s Project Mercury.<br> <br> <strong>Do this:</strong> Become a talent management expert. Distribute those with the most experience among those with the least, and actively seek opportunities to provide new experiences to the most junior acquirers. Be sure that innovation and productivity are rewarded!<br> <br> <img alt="a city with blueprints" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/defacq-datl_septoct2021_article1_image02.jpg" style="width:500px;height:147px;" /><br> <br> <strong>For more, read: </strong><a href=""><em>A Passion for Excellence: The Leadership Difference </em>(Tom Peters and Nancy Austin, 1985)</a> <h3>Learn fast, fail small.</h3> A culture of allowing teams occasionally to fail is both a result and a feature of the preceding axioms. The dogmatic acquisition mindset is to eliminate costly failures through detailed planning. Yet, no plan is perfect, and some level of failure usually occurs anyway. Beginning a large project with small steps, anticipating off ramps for dead-end ideas, testing with users as early as possible, and incorporating lessons into the next revision of the product will often put your team months or years ahead of trying to scrupulously plan a decades-long program before bending any metal. The acknowledgment that it is acceptable, even good, to fail is a core lesson of Silicon Valley and is foundational for a culture of innovation and agility.<br> <br> This axiom must be used with care and is sometimes misunderstood. Failure is not the goal, learning is. Gen. Creech had a saying for this, too: “A mistake is not a crime, and a crime is not a mistake.” The manager must separate one from the other, accepting only the first. Sometimes the cost of failure is extreme, but there also are circumstances where the cost of risk aversion is extreme—the two must be balanced. An advanced jet fighter program in full-scale production might not be the right place to throw procedure to the winds. However, most program offices are a blend of production, sustainment, and new development. Subsets of these organizations are ripe for small, rapid learning events. Middle management’s response sets the tone for the whole office.<br> <br> <strong>Do this: </strong>Judiciously create enclaves of innovation in your larger team; have the courage to celebrate experimentation and implement successes. Develop metrics that appropriately reward innovation and productivity towards leaders’ intended goals.<br> <br> <strong>For more, read: </strong><em><a href="">Team of Teams (Gen. Stanley McChrystal, et al., 2015)</a><br> <br> <img alt="a man running with a laptop" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/defacq-datl_septoct2021_article1_image03.jpg" style="width:500px;height:196px;" /></em> <h3>Involve the Warfighter.</h3> Nearly all the axioms above have discussed the importance of an integrated team. However, there is a tendency to label the Warfighter as “the customer”—a distinction that can promote an aloof attitude toward the end user, often perhaps reducing the acquisition program to a dull procession of tedious paperwork. Weapon system acquisition should feel exciting! Gen. Creech used a surprisingly simple trick to fix a broken aircraft maintenance system: painting the crew chiefs’ names on the aircraft for which they had become newly responsible. This simple gesture created pride and unleashed creative productivity in TAC.<br> <br> Motivation is a powerful force in organizational culture, and according to Adam Grant, author of the book Originals: How Nonconformists Move the World, no one is better at motivating the workforce than the product’s end user. For this reason, all the rules about high-performing teams apply. The end user should participate with and, ideally, have physical proximity to the rest of the acquisition team. The opposite relationship is important, too. Operational units should encourage program office personnel to visit tactical conferences, tour facilities, and take incentive rides. Dialogue with the users’ major command is not a sufficient substitute. Formal requirements may come from Air Combat Command, but real understanding and buy-in comes from direct interaction with operational units. It is not enough to view the Warfighter as a member of the IPT; the IPT must come to understand that its work is a crucial foundation for the Warfighter’s job.<br> <br> <strong>Do this:</strong> Include operators in your programs as often as possible. Request TDYs to operational units to gain hands-on time with the system and strengthen relationships with the program office.<br> <br> <strong>For more, read:</strong> <a href=""><em>Originals: How Nonconformists Move the World </em>(Adam Grant, 2016)</a> <h3>Plan for uncertainty, capitalize on agility.</h3> Experienced managers will acknowledge that all programs have unknowns. Development is a risky and complex endeavor, and the existence of unknowns is one reason for the array of different contract types. Why, then, on even the most ill-defined efforts, do many IPTs labor in vain to perfect the wording in a constraining statement of work? Even before potential vendors can cobble together a prototype, IPTs toil to produce an “accurate” cost estimate (reported to the cent). These efforts give a false sense of procedural certainty and are not the best use of limited resources. Software efforts suffer an especially high administration-to-productivity ratio. A few lines of code that might take a week to change and thoroughly test will take several months of contract work—even years, if this work falls outside the scope of the congressionally authorized budget. This demand for predictability might be appropriate in full-rate production, but it will crush the creativity of your highly agile innovation enclave (see axiom Number 5).<br> <br> Fortunately, tools exist to permit and even profit from this uncertainty. Many high-performing organizations have noted the benefit of innovative contracting officers who possess experience with the vast range of tools at their disposal (Federal Acquisition Regulation-based contracts, Other Transaction Authorities, Cooperative Research and Development Agreements, Commercial Solutions Openings, etc.). These professionals use their best judgment to balance flexibility with accountability and craft contractual language with sufficiently broad scope to permit programs to seize opportunities and respond to urgent needs. Of course, senior management must trust that these experienced officers are working within the bounds of the law (see axiom Number 2). If a program office only uses one tool, it probably isn’t taking full advantage of the authorities at its disposal.<br> <br> <strong>Do this:</strong> Seek out dexterous, forward-leaning contracting officers and financial managers. Provide the transparency and advocacy necessary to enable senior managers’ comfort with broad scope and rapid contract changes. Expect changes to programs!<br> <br> <strong>For more, read: </strong><a href=""><em>The Black Swan </em>(Nassim Taleb, 2007)</a> <h3>Conclusion</h3> None of these axioms can be declared most important, and few of them would work in isolation. They are dependent and mutually reinforcing enablers of cultural change. No amount of acquisition reform or tactical-level procedural changes will result in significant improvement if the culture is not right.<br> These axioms have been proven in the Air Force, both with the “TAC Turnaround” under Gen. Creech, and with the success of pilot programs initiated by our acquisition executives. We hope you are convinced that these basic principles encouraging innovation, speed, and agility are tailorable and applicable in different degrees to all sizes and functions of acquisition programs. Ultimately, the artful tailoring and application of these concepts is a leadership problem. Organizational change is uncomfortable but, given the inertia of decades of bureaucratic build-up, discomfort is probably a sign you are on the right track.<br> <br> For more on the “TAC Turnaround,” read: <a href=""><em>The Five Pillars of TQM </em>(Bill Creech, 1995/2002)</a> <hr />DeNeve is an Air University Fellow, teaching in the Department of Joint Warfighting at the U.S. Air Force (USAF) Air Command and Staff College (ACSC). He has master’s degrees in Systems Engineering and Military Operational Art and Science, as well as experience with various USAF, Special Operations Forces, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, and nuclear programs.<br> <br> Price is a former Silicon Valley executive with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from UCLA and a doctorate in military history from the University of North Texas. At the ACSC, he teaches courses on War Theory, Joint Warfighting (JPME I), Airpower, as well as courses within the Joint All-Domain Strategist concentration. He is completing a book on USAF modernization in the post-Vietnam War era under contract with Naval Institute Press. Opinions, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this article are solely those of the authors.<br> <br> The authors can be contacted at <a class="ak-cke-href" href=""></a>, and <a class="ak-cke-href" href=""></a>. <hr /><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="tweet" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/tweetbutton.jpg" style="border-width:0px;border-style:solid;float:left;width:200px;height:80px;" /></a><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="subscribe" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/suscribebutton.jpg" style="border-width:0px;border-style:solid;float:left;width:200px;height:80px;" /></a></div>string;#/library/defense-atl/blog/How-to-Accelerate-Change-in-Your-Program-Office
Revisiting John Boyd and the OODA Loop in Our Time of Transformation John Boyd and the OODA Loop in Our Time of Transformation2021-10-04T16:00:00Z,<div class="ExternalClass6AC88BC522FD4E68927BDCC62032F92A"><h2 style="text-align:center;">An Introductory Note from DAU President - Frank Kelley</h2> When I taught at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, my Marine majors (and I did consider those in the class as my majors) broke the code on Kelley and discovered that if you wrote a paper and included John Boyd and the OODA loop you got an “A.”<br> Mark Phillips was just as astute as those majors when he reached out to me recently with his novel observations on DAU’s transformation. I really appreciated his “no notice” Teams call to me, in which we shared our common appreciation for Boyd’s principles of warfare and combat … the most intense of competitive environments.<br> <br> Our current National Defense Strategy states that we are in a competitive environment—and that “we” includes DAU. The application of Boyd’s OODA loop is more than appropriate with regard to our transformation.<br> <br> Mark took it up a few notches and discovered other areas where he and I shared the same view. By including management guru W. Edwards Deming and psychologist Gary Klein, Mark concedes that the environment we find ourselves in is complex and the solutions to our problems are likely to come from many sources.<br> <br> But the simplicity of the Guiding Principles that Mark examines, paying attention, and keeping an open mind are keys to our transformation. Mark’s call to action, his challenge “to promote an acquisition system that rapidly delivers warfighting capability,” resonates with me.<br> Read this article and ask yourself where are you in the OODA loop … and what will it take for you to take action. <hr />The DAU 2021-2023 Strategic Plan rolled out the DAUNext initiative, and its theme is “Empowering the Workforce Today for Their Future.” This subject can be approached in a variety of ways. One way is to look through the lens of U.S. Air Force Col John Boyd and his OODA Loop.<br> <br> The Vision section of the Strategic Plan states, “An accomplished and adaptive workforce giving the Warfighter the decisive edge [emphasis added].” The phrase decisive edge leads us to the thoughts of Col Boyd and his OODA Loop, or the Observe, Orient, Decide, Act cycle. This can be done to achieve what DAU terms frictionless learning, dynamic networking, and world-class content.<br> <br> Col John Boyd was a fighter pilot and scholar. He is known for developing the Energy Maneuverability theory (EM), and many claim that he was the author of the First Gulf War battle plan. Arguably his greatest contribution is as the originator of the OODA loop, less often referred to as the Boyd Cycle or simply the Decision Cycle. <h3>The OODA Loop</h3> To get to the OODA Loop, it is important to understand how Boyd got there. He wrote a 1976 paper titled <a href="">Destruction and Creation</a>. From the outset, Boyd pursued a deeper meaning. He posited that one had to be constantly destroying and creating new views of the world. He expanded on that idea in the 1987 paper titled The Strategic Game of ? and ?.<br> <br> It has been said that, if you want a fresh apple, you go to the tree. A quote from Destruction and Creation explains:<br> <br> <em>When acting within a rigid or essentially a closed system, the goal-seeking effort of individuals and societies to improve their capacity for independent action tends to produce disorder toward randomness and death. On the other hand, as already shown, the increasing disorder generated by the increasing mismatch of the system concept with observed reality opens or unstructures the system. As the unstructuring, or as we’ll call it the destructive deduction, unfolds, it shifts toward a creative induction to stop the trend toward disorder and chaos to satisfy a goal-oriented need for increased order.</em> <h3>Transformation</h3> From the context of transformation, we break down and use Boyd’s “observed reality” from Destruction and Creation:<br> <br> <em>When acting within a rigid or essentially a closed system, the goal-seeking effort of individuals and societies to improve their capacity for independent action tends to produce disorder toward randomness and death.</em><br> <br> As changes occur, we see people trying to adapt to transformation. Here, within the context of a monolithic operation, transformation is happening in a closed system. According to Boyd, one would expect a closed system to become more chaotic as people try to figure out what to do.<br> On the other hand, as already shown, the increasing disorder generated by the increasing mismatch of the system concept with observed reality opens or unstructures the system.<br> <br> Issues arise that are related to the mismatch between the system and observed reality, as people question how things should work and how they actually work.<br> <br> <em>As the unstructuring, or as we’ll call it the destructive deduction, unfolds, it shifts toward a creative induction to stop the trend toward disorder and chaos to satisfy a goal-oriented need for increased order.</em><br> <br> When people try to function, they are going to surmount transformation so that their part of the world can make sense and function in an orderly way. Boyd considered this to be a good thing that should be exploited. That’s an example of frictionless learning. <h3>Other Influences</h3> It appears that Boyd was a student of management guru W. Edwards Deming and had a firm understanding of Deming’s System of Profound Knowledge. According to, this is:<br> <br> <em>… a highly integrated framework of thought and action for any leader wishing to transform an organization operating under the prevailing system of management into a thriving, systemically focused organization.</em><br> <br> The conclusion can be drawn that the Orient phase of the OODA loop is tied to that concept.<br> <br> Boyd also was influenced by Gary Klein and understood Recognition Primed Decision (RPD), as mentioned by Chet Richards, in his book Certain to Win. Klein’s book, Sources of Power, describes RPD as the ability to arrive at a decision more rapidly based on a person’s level of experience. That is, increased experience enables a person to arrive at a decision more rapidly.<br> <br> RPD gives the OODA loop its velocity and as Boyd states, “It’s like they’re moving in slow motion.” (Boyd was referring to the action within an enemy’s OODA Loop.)<br> <br> As one becomes more adept at the OODA loop (see Boyd’s model), Boyd postulated that you can essentially skip orientation and decide and go straight to Act. This is what gives speed to the decision cycle. Another example of frictionless learning.<br> <br> As Boyd stated in Destruction and Creation:<br> <br> <em>As the unstructuring, or as we’ll call it the destructive deduction, unfolds, it shifts toward a creative induction to stop the trend toward disorder and chaos to satisfy a goal-oriented need for increased order. </em><br> <br> Boyd also talked about “standard work” as being able to move faster through OODA loops. Standard work as defined by Toyota is a detailed definition of the best practices for performing a process. Standard work drives continuous improvement. Standard work helps speed the decision cycle. This is an example of world-class content.<br> <br> <img alt="Figure 1. Boyd’s OODA Loop Sketch" src="/library/defense-atl/DATLFiles/Sept-Oct_2021/defacq-datl_septoct2021_article2_figure1.jpg" style="width:800px;height:287px;" /> <h3>The OODA Loop Explained</h3> So what does the OODA loop do? The OODA loop provides a context to add order to this chaos.<br> <br> Robert Coram, in his book, <em><a href="">Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War</a></em>, explained the two “implicit guidance and control” arrows as:<br> <br> <em>Note that Boyd includes the ‘Implicit Guidance & Control’ from ‘Orientation’ with both ‘Observations’ and ‘Action.’ This is his way of pointing out that when one has developed the proper Fingerspitzengefuhl [fingertips feeling] for a changing situation, the tempo picks up and it seems one is then able to bypass the explicit ‘Orientation’ and ‘Decision’ part of the Loop, to ‘Observe’ and ‘Act’ almost simultaneously. The speed must come from a deep intuitive understanding of one’s relationship to the rapidly changing environment. This is what enables a commander seemingly to bypass parts of the Loop. It is this adaptability that gives the OODA Loop its awesome power. </em><br> <br> Perhaps the following example can illustrate how the OODA loops:<br> <br> You are driving on a slick road. As you drive you start to slide. You Observe the unfolding conditions. As you Orient (am I on sand, ice, snow, etc.?) … Decide is almost instantaneous, based on my experience as, I Act quickly to maintain control of the vehicle.<br> <br> If you have never slid in a car, your decision cycle will be slow. If you have driven on a wet road and experienced a slide, your decision cycle will be quicker. If you have driven on a variety of slick surfaces, your decision cycle will be very fast. (A good book to read is Klein’s Sources of Power. Klein describes the theory of RPD as referred to earlier. <h3>What’s Next?</h3> Here is how DAU is exploiting lessons from Boyd and the OODA loop in the DAUNext transformation: <ol> <li>By emphasizing frictionless learning in deconstructing what we did in the past and promoting what we must do. By getting inside students’ decision cycle to anticipate learning.</li> <li>By developing world-class content to set the standard in the field. As Boyd would say, we should be “unstructuring the system to creative induction” to think, “faster and in new ways” to drive critical thinking skills. We need to leverage what we have as templates for what the customer needs instead of reinventing the wheel.</li> <li>By creating Dynamic Networks utilizing the natural decision cycle that DAU offers its customer. Engage all in the service line to drive participation and improvement.</li> </ol> <br> Boyd was ahead of his time and remains so in 2021. His scholarly work and the introduction of the OODA loop can be applied to transformation. His belief, as evidenced in his writings, was that transformation can occur, but it requires effort and thought. By getting inside our customers’ decision cycles and then inside our own decision cycle, we can anticipate the needs of our customer and promote an acquisition system that rapidly delivers warfighting capability.<br> It is not easy, but it is needed for the future of both defense capabilities and DAU. <hr />Phillips is a professor of Quality Assurance in the College of Contract Management at DAU in Huntsville, Alabama.<br> <br> The author can be contacted at <a class="ak-cke-href" href=""></a>.</div>string;#/library/defense-atl/blog/revisiting-john-boyd



3 Compelling Reasons Why APU is Designed Around Your Goals Compelling Reasons Why APU is Designed Around Your Goals2021-07-26T12:00:00Z Q3 2021_Banner.jpg, Q3 2021_Banner.jpg Q3 2021_Banner.jpg<div class="ExternalClassB971F07169C5457BB7DE40A4A4A69919"><strong>3 Compelling Reasons Why APU is Designed Around Your Goals</strong><br> <br> <strong>1. Best-in-class career services</strong><br> We offer best-in-class <a href="">career services</a> at no cost to students and alumni, which include everything from coaching and resume reviews to virtual career fairs that can connect you with leading employers whether they’re corporations or federal agencies. These services are no cost and available for life – whether you’re a student or an alumnus.<br> The Career Services team holds the latest in coaching credentials and are highly skilled in helping you be at your best while performing a career search or preparing to make the best, first impression with hiring managers or looking to advance in your current organization. The team helps civilians, veterans and transitioning service members define their career goals and outline key steps to achieve those goals.<br> <br> <strong>2. Less Complicated – More Transfer Friendly</strong><br> We’re less complicated and <a href="">more transfer (credit) friendly</a>. Previously earned credits and even your career background may accelerate degree completion at any degree level. If you have any academic credits from other universities, professional training or military service, don’t leave previously earned credits on the table.<br> We provide you with a dedicated, helpful team and our $0 transfer credit evaluation (TCE) service. Even as a prospective student, you can request a free preliminary transfer credit review. It’s important to understand that previously earned credits and even your career background can accelerate degree completion at the undergraduate and graduate levels.<br> We work hard to ensure that transfer students get all the credit they deserve. Students can earn up to 90 transfer credits toward a bachelor’s degree. We’ll review your college credits, JST and CCAF transcripts, DANTES, POST, ACE-evaluated training, and credits by exam.<br> <br> <strong>3. Flexible Education that Fits Your Life</strong><br> You don’t have to sacrifice quality for convenience when it comes to affordable education. Combined with the fact that you can choose from over <a href="">200 career-relevant programs</a> with classes that start monthly—you have the ability to achieve your educational goals using asynchronous online education that works around your busy schedule. Moreover, our faculty members are scholar-practitioners, with many holding leadership positions in their fields.<br> For more information, go online to <a href=""></a>.<br> <br> <em>*The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.</em><br></div>string;#/partnerships/blog/3-Compelling-Reasons-Why-APU-is-Designed-Around-Your-Goals-
THE UNIVERSITY OF YOU UNIVERSITY OF YOU2021-07-12T12:00:00Z - WGU Northeast Region_DAU Partnership Banner Ads.jpg, - WGU Northeast Region_DAU Partnership Banner Ads.jpg - WGU Northeast Region_DAU Partnership Banner Ads.jpg<div class="ExternalClass760E6C6B05F34E58A2E9AF9DFE1D45BD"><a href="">Western Governors University</a> was founded in 1997 by a group of U.S. governors who wanted to make higher education a possibility for anyone who wants to pursue it. Today, WGU stands as an accredited, nonprofit university that has enabled over 220,000 students to earn valuable bachelor’s and master’s degrees without stepping foot in a classroom.<br> <br> <a href="">WGU has partnered with Defense Acquisition University</a> to accept DAU credits into WGU's business and IT bachelor's degree programs, saving DAU students time and money. Read on to learn how WGU can help you achieve your education goals.<br> <br> <br> <strong>The WGU Difference</strong><br> <br> At WGU, your success is measured by learning, not time spent in class. You’re able to advance through courses as quickly as you prove mastery of the material, which can get you to your degree quicker and save you money too.<br> <br> Want to accelerate your degree even more? Take more than the expected number of courses per term without paying extra, thanks to our always low flat-rate tuition. And even though our degree programs are all online, you’ll never be alone—a faculty mentor will give you one-on-one support from enrollment through graduation.<br> <br> <strong>Degree Programs of Interest </strong><br> <br> WGU business and IT degrees are accredited and respected—you can be proud of your diploma. Our degree programs are designed with input from industry professionals and updated regularly to ensure you learn the specific skills you need for today’s careers. Many WGU IT degree programs even allow you to earn in-demand industry certifications at no extra cost.<br> <br> Here are some of our top IT and business degrees for DAU students:<br> <ul> <li><a href="">B.S. Cybersecurity and Information Assurance</a></li> <li><a href="">B.S. Network Operations and Security</a></li> <li><a href="">B.S. Cloud Computing</a></li> <li><a href="">B.S. Business Administration–IT Management</a></li> <li><a href="">MBA IT Management</a></li> <li><a href="">B.S. Business Administration–Accounting</a></li> <li><a href="">M.S. Management and Leadership (MSML)</a></li> </ul> <br> Want more options? <a href="">Click here</a> to take a closer look at the 60+ degrees we offer in business, IT, teaching, and healthcare.<br> <br> <strong>Military Friendly</strong><br> <br> Thanks to our flexible online model and compatibility with military education benefits, WGU has been designated a Military Friendly® School for 11 years in a row. All degree programs offered at WGU are approved by the Department of Veterans Affairs for all education benefits offered under the <a href="">GI Bill®</a>.<br> <br> Because WGU’s tuition rates are quite modest, most education benefits will generally more than cover the full cost of tuition, fees, and books. We are also pleased to offer special scholarships to service members, veterans, and family members, such as the <a href="">$2,500 Military Appreciation Scholarship</a>.<br> <br> <strong>Transfer Friendly</strong><br> <br> Our generous credit transfer policy will help you get closer to that diploma by applying as many of your already-earned credits as possible toward your WGU degree. <a href="">Click here</a> to learn more about WGU’s simple Transfer Pathways for DAU students and grads.<br> <br> <strong>Scholarships Available</strong><br> <br> Even with WGU’s tuition being about half the national average for a bachelor’s degree and about five times less for a master’s, we have plenty of scholarship opportunities for students in need.* In fact, WGU awarded over $20 million in scholarships just last year. If you’re in need of tuition assistance, <a href="">check out our page of available scholarships</a> and start applying today!<br> <br> <br> *Comparison based on yearly average tuition. External averages pulled from the 2019 Integrated Postsecondary Data System and the National Center for Education Statistics.<br> <br> GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at <a href=""></a>.<br></div>string;#/partnerships/blog/THE-UNIVERSITY-OF-YOU



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