Carl von Clausewitz
Carl von Clausewitz, full name Carl Philipp Gottlieb von Clausewitz was a Prussian general, important military strategist and theorist. His work, opinions and statements influenced strategic theories and is among the most often quoted and also among the most controversial. To this day, his views are taught at a number of universities not only in the military, but also in the field of strategic management. His most important work, Vom Kriege (On War) is based on his own observations and experiences from the wars of the French Revolution, Napoleonic Wars, and the exploration of war history.
His most quoted statement is: “War is the continuation of politics by other means.” Clausewitz’s influence on strategic management lies not only in military theory, but it can be also transferred into the strategic management of organizations. He was convinced that defense is a more efficient way of the wartime activities than attack. Clausewitz advocated the idea that “thinking must adapt to changed conditions.” His notion “fog of war” is based on his own experience from the war and figuratively means uncertainty of assessment and evaluation of one’s own skills, opponent’s skills and the whole situation during the collision or ongoing battle that takes place usually under stress. It is an important finding for management in the sense that immersion in the solution of the problem can reduce the assessment of the situation from above and so much more, if it takes place under stress.