The Divide and Conquer Approach

by Dr. Dennis W. Neder

Hey, Doctor Neder,

I am a big fan of your articles. However, I'm a little puzzled on how a group of guys can hook up with another group of girls. For example, my three friends and I want to pick up some girls at a vacation spot we go every summer.

If we see a group of chicks, how do we approach them? Would we say something like "Hey guys, how's it going?" or " Hi ladies, what's up?" and then introduce ourselves and ask them where they are from? How would each of us subtly get with the individual we want without conflict? We aren't really the most experienced guys when it comes to girls. We could really use some help. Thanks so much.


When you're with a bunch of guys, the most likely scenario is that one (or more of you) finds one or two of the girls attractive - not the entire group. Of course that doesn't mean that the "three (or more) on three (or more)" (where each of you chooses a particular woman), doesn't happen, it's just not as common.

The best bet is always to use the "Divide and Conquer" method. There are a number of names for a method like this, but I like to use the Chess motif. Here's how this works:

The guys decide who's turn it is to be the "King" and this should rotate each time you play. The King is the guy that is going to approach a particular target and get her number (or more). The other guys are "Knights" and their job is to help break up the pack so that the King can make his approach.

One or more Knights approach the pack of women and start a conversation. This isn't difficult, especially because there are no demands on this approach other than to start a conversation. When there is more than one Knight you can even decide on the approach you want to use.

Just as when you're by yourself, it's always better to have some "opener" that DOES NOT involve some stupid line. However, even a line will work in this case, because the function of the Knights isn't to try to get numbers, (although that may happen), it's to separate off the target woman and make it easier for the King to approach.

When the Knights make the initial approach, they may just say, "Hello!" and introduce yourselves. You might also have worked out something else in advance, but the point is it really doesn't matter. You're just trying to break the ice here.

Once you get a conversation started, and things are moving along (this will only take a couple of minutes), the King moves in. This is where the Knights do their best work! The King walks over and stands next to his target, (he tells the Knights who he's interested in beforehand and thus, one of the jobs of the Knights is to make sure the target is situated so that there's room for the King to stand or sit next to her). Next, one of the Knights introduces their friend to the group. The King then says hello to the pack.

The next step is very important. The Knights now continue to engage the rest of the women in conversation, thus separating them from the target, and the King can turn to her and say, "So, what's your name?" or something else. this gives him a chance to work her and get her number.

He needs to keep this primary mission in mind and should move her toward it though his conversation. If things get going too long, the Knights can begin to "peel off", and the last one tells the King, "It's time to go." This is a great opener for him to ask for her number so that they can "talk again".

Once the Knights have done their jobs, they can then begin to pursue any of the women in the pack in the same way the King is with his, but don't forget your primary mission - helping the King.

When a group of guys gets together to go out hunting, they should work out the details beforehand. For example, the guys may get together for dinner before a hunting session and discuss things like:

  1. A review of the ground rules - how the "Divide and Conquer" approach works,
  2. The order each will be the "King"
  3. How long you'll work on a particular pack and/or target
  4. Different types of approaches.

When you use this approach there are a number of things to watch out for:

  1. Someone "hogs" being the King,
  2. The King becomes engaged in talking with a woman, won't give up his position and leave to act as a Knight,
  3. What to do if a Knight fails to do his job and takes over being a King instead, (he misses being the King the next time for example).

The great thing about this approach is that it works no matter how many women are together, and it even works if there are other men in the group! All you need is a minimum of two guys to work this approach effectively.

By the way, I'd strongly recommend that you get at least one copy of "Being a Man in a Woman's World" and read it. There's no reason why you should be inexperienced in these things when all the philosophy you need is contained in one place!

Got a love, relationship or man/woman question? I answer all letters. You can write to me at for answers. For more information about my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World", visit: