The Ultimate Game of Strategy


Olly's Tool Box

Coming up to Xmas, my ten year old son, Olly, saw a tool box in the window of an automobile accessory store. It contained over two hundred different types of spanner. For some unfathomable reason he took a fancy to it and on the run up to Xmas insisted that this is what he wanted for a Xmas present. As this tool box was a clearance item and being sold off at a large discount I bought it for him as an extra present to give him a little excitement for Xmas day.

What would a ten year old want with a set of automobile spanners? Well, for the first six months the tool box lay around in the garage unused. Then one day a wheel came loose on one of Olly's skates. I tried to fix it but none of the spanners I had would fit. I'd forgotten about the tool box but my son hadn't. He went out to the garage and came back with a collection of spanners and found one that fitted and fixed the wheel himself. Within a week or so, he was fixing things on his bicycle.

When his elder brother had trouble with the saddle adjustment on his bike, Olly got out his tool box and fixed that. One day, the braking light on my car failed. The trouble seemed to be a contact switch that was hidden away in an inaccessible recess behind the pedal. Olly saw me sweating and cursing, trying to get at this faulty switch. Out he came with his tool box, pushed me aside and promptly proceeded to reset the position of the contact switch and to my amazement got it working again.

Soon, Olly and his tool box were called into service for a variety of different jobs. We began to wonder how we had survived so long without his handy little tool box that always seems to produce the right tool whenever one was needed.

The pay-off came about eighteen months later. I saw him in the garage surrounded by a number of broken skateboards. He took them apart and out of all the components assembled one that worked. He took it to school next day and sold it to one of his friends - for more money than I'd paid for the toolbox.

This book is like Olly's tool box. It isn't a "how to" book. It is a tool box. A set of tools consisting of conceptual models that can be applied to all kinds of e-business situations. The tools by themselves are of no use - their value only manifests when applied to a problem.