In most cases, the word preparation conjures up the image of “paying a price.” It is considered as a “necessary” thing to do else you can’t get the prize when you are actually performing whatever you have prepared for.
My feeling is that we need to put on a different hat when we are thinking about preparation = what we should conjure up is the image of the prize and not the price.
The prize is already factored in when you prepare. You have got your ROI way before you perform. In fact, the moment you start preparing well, you are accumulating positive ROI.
A couple of examples:
I recently gave two talks in Bengaluru on the topic of “Why Smart People Get Stuck.” This is a topic I have been researching on for 3.5 years so I thought it would be a breeze. However, as I started preparing for the talk, there were whole lot of things that I had to deal with – including structure, examples, opening, closing, transition, pausing, preparing slides, animation, sequencing and actual delivery in front of the mirror etc. Preparation has an in-built magical element that ups the clarity in your own mind on the topic that you are preparing. That’s exactly what happened. The more I prepared, the more I prepared, the clearer the concepts became. The prize was right there during the preparation. I didn’t have to wait for delivering what I prepared. The prize of thank you notes I got after the delivery was a big bonus.
On April 22, I will be conducting a workshop on “The Art of Personal Branding” (organized by Compassites Software Solutions and HomeConnect) in Bangalore. Unlike the above two talks, a workshop requires even more preparation – including game design for participation, thinking about where exactly to give a break so that audience can breathe, structuring content in such a way that EVERY one benefits from the participation etc.
Since I have absolutely no time during the day, the preparation time has to be at night and if I think I am paying a price for preparation, it would make things hard. However, once I see that the prize is in the preparation, things change drastically for the better.
Note: If you are in Bangalore on April 22 and want to attend the event on personal branding, the details are here.