Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin by Ronald M. Shapiro
Over the course of a forty-year career in the worlds of law, sports, business, and politics, Ron Shapiro has worked with and advised an incredible variety of people. What he’s found is that the secret ingredient for getting into the winner’s circle is simply the discipline of methodical preparation: that old-school, step-by-step way of having all your ducks in a row, whether you are an executive getting ready to do a deal or make a speech; a pitcher studying the traits of opposing hitters and keeping a meticulous notebook of their strengths and weaknesses; an international trade negotiator who knows all about the issues and the people on the other side before sitting down at the table; or a surgeon who rehearses like a classical musician.
Deep down, you know you should do it. But how often do you wing it and fly by the seat of your pants because “Gosh, I don’t have time . . . I’ve done this before . . . I know what I’m doing”? It is obvious that you have to get ready for whatever game you’re playing, but all too frequently methodical preparation is the missing ingredient in today’s world of instant analysis, easy access to information, and glibness that sounds good at first but is unconnected with the reality at hand.