EP# 010: Colonel John Boyd

This week’s topic is on Air Force Colonel John Boyd, a military strategist considered the modern Sun Tzu. Colonel Boyd made extensive contributions to fighter tactics, aircraft design, and the theory of air combat than any man in Air Force history. He is most famous for developing the OODA Loop.

In the same vein as Sun Tzu, Musashi, Liddell Hart, Napolean, Genghis Khan, and Mao Tse Tung, you can effectively apply his teachings to business. Business is not war, but you can apply the similar principles to outmaneuver your competition and continually surprise and wow customers. Just be a bit more PC than Boyd if you want to get your ideas accepted. It might take longer but you will have more friends than enemies and less stress.

Show notes (with time stamps)

Introduction: 00:00 – 03:42


Act I: 03:47 - 29:19

Act II: 29:24 - 46:41

Act III: 46:45 - 50:39

Boyd and Business: 50:44 - 56:36

Conclusion: 56:40 - 1:02:56


Artist: Scott Holmes

Album: Road Trip

Track: Indie Rock


Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War by Robert Coram

The Mind of War: John Boyd and American Security by Grant Hammond

Science, Strategy and War: The Strategic Theory of John Boyd by Frans Osinga (dissertation)

A Vision So Noble: John Boyd, the OODA Loop, and America’s War on Terror by Daniel Ford


Spinney, F.C. (1997, July). Genghis John, Proceedings Magazine (U.S. Naval Institute), 123(7), 42-47.


Sun Tzu: Strategies for Marketing: 12 Essential Principles for Winning the War for Customers by Gerald Michaelson and Steven Michaelson

Olsen, J. (Winter 2016). Boyd Revisited: A Great Mind with a Touch of Madness, Air Power History, 63(4), 7-16. Retrieved from http://www.afhistory.org/wp-content/uploads/APH-Winter2016.pdf

Hankins, M. (2018, August 22). A Discourse on John Boyd: A Brief Summary of the US Air Force’s Most Controversial Pilot and Thinker. Retrieved from https://balloonstodrones.com/2018/08/22/a-discourse-on-john-boyd-a-brief-summary-of-the-us-air-forces-most-controversial-pilot-and-thinker/comment-page-1/