Several years ago I had a boss who taught me a number of valuable skills, at the top of the list was preparedness. To be clear, I’m not talking casual prep before a meeting with a couple of questions or a basic goal to be achieved. I’m talking about critical, focused thinking. Admittedly, I at first found it a little annoying that each scheduled meeting with someone resulted in at least one meeting before the meeting in order to “prepare”. Previously I had just sort of prepared by thinking a bit about the planned meeting without focusing too much on goals or outcomes. These things however are precisely what my boss wanted me to focus on. Indeed, what reason to meet with someone if there is not some desired goal or outcome? And how can you effectively and efficiently realize that outcome if you don’t have a plan. Sure, on occasion you may may stumble into getting what you want but you can increase your odds exponentially if you take the time to prepare.
When these pre-meetings occurred, we would walk through what we desired, what the other party likely desired, what potential roadblocks could emerge, our potential solutions or concessions (many of the meetings dealt with contracts and/or partnerships), brainstorming creative contract requests, exit clauses, etc. Because of this careful preparation we more often than not ended up with very favorable deals.
I’ve since began applying this same discipline to other areas of my life with great success. The most easily identified one is in sport where using careful planning and preparing before an endurance event leads to desired results at the event. When you look at your own preparation, for anything, really ask yourself if you are diligently preparing or merely going through the motions to get by. There is a big difference.
destined for a mess
Sometimes I know the exact outcome or result of something but I do it anyway, I’m not sure why, it feels good and I think it’s because I just want thrill in my life. The funny thing is, such a contradiction in itself, I want to be able to feel something but again in this game I leave it all aside.
“Katjaa wouldn’t want this. Damn it, Ken!”
“Yeah, she would. I either save the kid or I get to see her. Either way… Now get back up there. Go get that girl!”