We’ve all heard the saying “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”  What about “An ounce of preparation is worth a pound of success.”  In my opinion, preparation does just that—ensures our ultimate success, especially in the world of business.

Last week I filled in for a colleague who had asked me to lead a business meeting.  After readily agreeing to do so, I developed an agenda and distributed it electronically to all meeting participants.  In an effort to have a productive meeting, I specifically stated (in red) how to come prepared for each specific agenda item.  This agenda was sent out 5 days in advance to give people a chance to digest and reflect on the content.

When the day of the meeting arrived, only one attendee was prepared or had even read the agenda.  The other people said they’d not yet reviewed the agenda, and as a result weren’t at all prepared.  This was disappointing news, to say the least.  We somehow managed to get through the agenda but it clearly didn’t have the desired impact.

When all was said and done I asked myself these three questions:

  1. What did this behavior truly say about the meeting participants?
  2. Could I have done something different that would garner different results?
  3. Were my expectations realistic?

I’m still a believer that “An ounce of preparation is worth a pound of success.”  What’s your opinion on this topic? Your thoughts matter to me and by sharing them we all learn.  Can’t wait to hear from you.