象棋中的“治局”方略

Management Strategies in Xiangqi

Author: Ba Yanchao from Xingyang

               荥阳·巴彦超

Translator: Jim Png from Xqinenglish.com

日前,一身为管理者的棋友问我,象棋里面到底有什么文化?我想这个问题应该是很多象棋爱好者和倡导者经常思考的。生活中的象棋文化俯拾皆是,今天就简单发表一下拙见,若能对这位棋友做好单位管理有所帮助,将不胜荣幸。

“开局、中局和残局”“四大名局”“千古无同局”,我们下棋人常按“局”而论,棋道与世道同理,世局无非棋局。善布棋局者必懂“治局”,一个基层单位无非就是局、委、村、镇而已。

Not long ago, a manager friend who was also a Xiangqi enthusiast asked me, “What culture could be found in Xiangqi?” I think many Xiangqi enthusiasts and leaders often ponder this problem. There are many examples of Xiangqi culture in everyday life, and I would like to take the opportunity today to express my own humble opinions. If it could help fellow enthusiasts in their daily managerial chores, I would be more than honored.

In Xiangqi, we often say refer to the opening, midgame, endgame, the four major endgame compositions, and various idioms like ‘there has not been any same game that has been played over the centuries’ et cetera. All these sayings have one thing in common: the game of Xiangqi itself. Indeed, as Xiangqi enthusiasts, we often refer to Xiangqi as a game which mirrors life, and we discuss Xiangqi regarding the games played. The Tao of Xiangqi would be the applicable to the Tao of life and vice versa. People proficient in Xiangqi are also able proficient in the matters of everyday life. In fact, a hierarchy of any unit would comprise of a leader, the leaders and the sub-units that they lead or manage.

 

一、排兵布阵 抓好人事

(1) Organizing the troops and preparing for warfare, use the best people available to carry out the chores

下好一盘棋的第一步应是“排兵布阵”,即把車马炮将士象摆布到合适的位置。如果开局就缺马少車,还没出手就处于劣势了。所以“治局”方略的第一步应是人事调整。有人就有一切,所有工作是靠人干出来的,“以人为本”是管理的核心。如果统帅在“调兵遣将”方面出了问题,不能把能力强大的“车”放到重要位置;不能给八面玲珑的马“松马腿”;不能给高效的“炮”搭“炮架”,这些“能人”就会受到制约,将达不到“人尽其才、物尽其用”的效果。刘邦正是用好了张良、萧何和韩信等人才得了天下。如果一个单位的负责人不能把人事调整做到位,后面的工作难度可想而知。

The first step in playing a good game of chess is to prepare well. In Xiangqi, that would mean to position the chariots, horses, cannons, king, advisors, elephants and pawns to the best places available. If there were not enough men on the board in the opening phase, one would be significantly disadvantaged.

Therefore, the first step in preparing for war would be putting the right person at the right place. When there are men available to do their jobs, work will be done, and rewards can be harvested. These rewards are the result of the hard work of these men. That is why the worker is at the nucleus of management. If the king was not able to put the right person in the right place, for example, moving the chariot to the essential lines, or not giving the majestic horse room to run free, or failing to give the mighty cannon its cannon mount(s), these abled people would not be able to live up to their full potential, and the entire unit would not be able to live up to its expectations. Liu Bang managed to secure the services of able men like Zhang Liang, Xiao He, and Han Xin, and together, these abled men helped Liu Bang to win the throne. That is why, if the leader were not able to put the correct person in the best possible position, we could foresee hard times ahead.

 

    二、行棋有方 建章立制

    (2) Playing chess methodically would be to establish a system and assigning roles

    做好排兵布阵的准备后,接下来看似是该进攻出招了,其实不然,大家忽略了一点,那就是谨记“行棋规则”。比如,哪些子力负责进攻,哪些子力负责防守,子力与子力之间如何配合,不同棋子都有哪些约束等等,这就需要提前规定好,就是我们常说的游戏规则。没有游戏规则,一盘棋就根本无法进行。所以,排兵布阵以后的工作应是研究规则。一个单位,在做好人事调整后,就要建立健全规章制度,运用完整科学的规章制度规范每个岗位的办事行为。以后再有事,只说一句话,“按规矩办”。

After putting the right men at the right places, the next step would seem to be the actual fighting. However, it would be a wrong concept as we would have neglected the importance of establishing a system. For example, which piece(s) would be in charge of attack, which piece(s) would be responsible for defense, how would they be coordinated, what the strengths and weaknesses of each piece were et cetera. Coordinating the troops must be done beforehand, and this would be equivalent to what we often say as the rules of the game. If there were no rules of conduct, it would be impossible to carry out a game of Xiangqi. That is why, after assigning the men to their respective roles, the next step would be to set up sound regulations or a set of regulations whereby each member could follow.  This clear set of rules and regulations would oversee each of the units and its members. If there were problems to be solved, these problems or challenges could be dealt with following the system.

 

  • 马跃車移 突出重点

(3) Allowing the horse to jump and the chariot to move, strike the enemy’s principal weaknesses

一盘棋要想取胜,开局要快速启动重要的子力,如車马炮等,因为这些子力行动迅速,及早投入战斗,能有效遏止反面势力的发展。“三步不出車,必定是输棋”说的就是这个道理。一个单位的管理,应尽快启动重要部门和重要岗位的人投入工作,“新官上任三把火”,这三把火应先抓重要部门来烧,从而达到“一車十子寒”的效应。

To win a game of Xiangqi, it would be critical to mobilizing the troops rapidly in the opening phase. Especially noteworthy are the major pieces (chariot, horse, and cannon). If these major pieces were able to be mobilized rapidly and participate in the attack early, they would impede the development of the enemy pieces.

The saying of “if the chariot is not moved within three steps, it would be a loss’ would refer to this tenet. The manager or a leader of a unit should try to get his men and various departments into action as soon as possible. The Chinese saying that ‘a new official would often light three fires’ would be the equivalent of the saying ‘a new broom sweeps clean.’ Indeed, the ‘fires’ should be ‘lit’ in the important departments such that they would perform to the best of their abilities. It would be like the Xiangqi saying, ‘ten enemy pieces shudder at the presence of a chariot.’

 

    四、运筹帷幄 长远规划

   (4) Making plans for the long run

    下好一盘棋,看的越深入、想得越透彻就会走的越准确,正所谓“谋定而后动”。下棋中看三步与看五步后作出的决策可能是大相径庭,甚至截然相反。作为一个单位的治理也是这样,要考虑到社会发展大趋势和国家政策导向,借鉴多方经验,作出长远规划,一切从大局出发。如此做事才能环环相扣、游刃有余,避免出现“当局者迷”的情况。

To play a good game of Xiangqi, the ability to see as deeply as possible and to think as clearly as possible would mean that the moves played would be accurate. It would be what the Chinese saying ‘plan well before you execute.’ The decision made after analyzing for three moves and analyzing for five moves ahead could be radically different or even the exact opposite.

As the manager of any unit, the same principles would apply. The manager or decision maker must take into consideration the trends in society and the policies of the government, and make decisions that would be feasible in the long run. If each detail could be taken into consideration while the big picture is not lost, the prospects would be rosy. Only when a manager can make the correct decisions that the men working under him would be well integrated and not lose the big picture like players on the Xiangqi board would often do.

 

    五、将帅慎行 解放自己

   (5) The King must move with caution and liberate himself

    好的下棋者,一般不会轻易移动将帅,如果把車马炮等走活的话,“水来土掩,兵来将挡”,将帅就不会受到任何威胁,便可“稳坐中军帐”垂拱而治。作为一个单位的负责人,如果不能简政放权、有效调动得力干将,那么,忙活的必然是自己。只有解放自己,才能腾出更多的时间把握全局、做好顶层设计。

棋中哲理无穷无尽,棋中文化博大精深,重要的是我们要辨证思维、结合实际、不断参悟、勇于实践。

A good Xiangqi player would not move his king without any good reason. If the chariot, horse and cannon et cetera were able to be played correctly, the king would not be in any grave danger and could make plans in peach in his army camp. If the leader or a commander were not able to give power or give power to his men to do their jobs, then he would be the one who would be busy and bothered with all sorts of trouble. Only when the leader was able to free himself from these nuances that he can really sit down and plan for the big picture.

There is simply too much philosophy that is encompassed in Xiangqi. For the Xiangqi enthusiast, it would be important to think correctly and practically, to keep improving oneself and be brave to take on challenges to prove that his ideas were correct.                  

 

                           

About the author, Ba Yanchao by Jim.
During one of my Xiangqi trips to China, I had the honor of meeting with several important officials and fellow Xiangqi enthusiasts from Xingyang, He-nan China.
One of them was Mr. Ba Yanchao, who serves in the Chu River and Han Border Cultural Promotion Center of Xingyang City in He-nan Province, China. The cultural promotion center is instrumental for having held the Million Dollar Xiangqi Match every two years, where the GM Zheng Weitong defeated GM Xie Jing to pocket the One Million Dollar Yuan purse in 2016. To date, Xingyang is pushing to become the Xiangqi capital of the world.
Pictures of Xiangqi promotion in Xingyang, China
Mr. Ba is a Xiangqi expert and enthusiast and has written several books Xiangqi. He was a co-author with Mr. Wang Juqun (whom I had the honor of seeing him play Xiangqi) in their best selling series Consecutive Kills in Xiangqi, which is divided into three volumes and further divided into many puzzles with kills with one move, two moves, three moves, etc up till 8-10 moves.

Their books can be accessed at the following link.

《象棋连将杀手册》

                                                     Mr. Ba Yanchao

First uploaded on 10th April 2018.
Last updated on 10th April 2018.
Acknowledgments:
Mr. Ba Yanchao for his hard work and contributions to promoting Xiangqi.

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