Mission Orders, 6 military principles that can work for agile teams

Yesterday, I was watching a documentary on the "Battle of the bulge" A famous battle in World war 2. The docu makers were investigating German tactics during the battle. Specifically, tactics which had worked so well early in the war, over extended periods of time, towards the end of the war, fell apart after 3-5 days.
Early in the war, German officers had Mission Command, that is, Hitler and high command had high trust in their teams. As the war went on, and things started to go wrong, mission command was gradually eroded as trust fell (especially when his officers tried to kill him).
Mission command basically means, set the goal, let the teams be responsible for how they are carried out. Training is centred around this, discipline and training carry you through the unexpected, as long as you know the end goal.
Effectively, the German high command no longer trusted the lower ranks, and only gave them enough information, goals etc for the immediate goals and set them on their way. Once situation changed, the soldiers were disempowered and the strategy collapsed. Thus, this helped contribute to the collapse (thank goodness) of German team cohesion and the end of the war.
Anyhoo, this led me to look up Mission Command, and it's guiding principles. It's very interesting and people have already made the connections with software (and other teams). Here are Mission command's six principles as currently taught in US military academies (with the word 'orders' and 'commanders' replaced with team friendly terms)
1. Build Cohesive teams through trust
2. Create a shared understanding
3. Provide a clear intent (I reworded this from: Provide a clear commanders intent)
4. Exercise disciplined initiative
5. Use mission goals (reworded from Use Mission orders)
6. Accept prudent risk
They are pretty cool principles, what do you think?


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