There are many great examples of how to use systems to improve. The other day I was watching the movie, Act of Valor, which is about Navy Seals. Most people watching that movie likely saw it differently than I did. I didn’t just see a bunch of random actions by the elite Seal team. I saw the manifestations of all the systems that went into everything that they did. They had a communication system and a system outlining authority within the unit and everyone’s role; they even had systems that told them exactly how to execute their mission, even though there are numerous unknowns. To me, the Navy Seals represent elite systems as much as they represent an elite military group.
One of best aspects of the U.S. military and especially elite military units is the ability to deal systematically with random occurrences. While the enemy may have machine guns and grenades, statistics show that the U.S. military personnel outperform their counterparts in combat. They often point to their training as the reason for this. The training is a great way to view how to ingrain systems by repetition. These ingrained systems then take over in the heat of battle and the natural instincts and actions of a well-trained soldier can overcome the randomness that an untrained person would observe.
Having elite systems drastically improves the chance of success. There are still circumstances that are out of anyone’s control, a randomness that can impact the outcome, but focusing on this is futile and won’t help to improve or reach a goal. By putting in place the best systems, and then training to reinforce those systems, the military can improve their chance of success dramatically.
This consistent, systematic way to approach battle shows just how different it can be when you are relying on elite systems instead of randomly hoping for the best. You can affect the outcome in many areas of your life, but not by just going through the motions. You have to be able to identify how to improve and work on the process that leads to improvement. This is never more apparent than with the U.S. military and specifically the elite Navy Seals.
For your own goals, make sure to address the underlying systems present and work to improve the habits and systems that will ultimately determine success or failure. Understand that situations can change, but that consistently moving towards your goal, step by step is the best way to strive for achievement.