Whether you’re a fighter pilot or a COD Black Ops pro, the ability to make and perform decisions quickly is a skill that we value in a range of professions. John Boyd‘s OODA Loop theory helps explain how a person processes a situation and come to an effective decision.
Observe: Assess the situation by taking into account new information about the changing environment.
Orient: Focussing your attention onto what you have observed and understanding this new information.
Decide: Come to a decision of what you will do.
Act: Perform your decision.
Although John’s original theory stopped here after act, there is a fifth step in this process: Feedback. In this final stage, the individual learns from the consequences (or results) of their action and may use this new information to readjust and make changes to future actions.
This process looks like this.