The Five P’s: “Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance”

today's preparation leads to tomorrow's success.

Who said Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance?

The Five P’s: “Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance.” is a quote by James Baker, former Secretary of State.

What does proper preparation prevents poor performance mean?

Performance is relative.  There is performing to such a level as to be better than most.  There is also performing at such a level that is intentional to drive you to be the best you can be.  The “Five P’s” can help remind you that more preparation yields better results.

If I am candid, I didn’t pursue the “Five P’s” early in my life.  I relied on what came naturally.  I trusted in whatever I had going for me and nothing more.  I spent life “winging” it and hoping that the results would be good enough.

The result: I was a decent athlete.  My love of the games caused me to be better prepared because I devoted time to it.  I didn’t prepare on purpose, but I experienced some success because of my passion for the game.  I was prepared, but only because I loved it.

I was an average student.  I tried to get by on as little effort as possible.  I didn’t value my education.  So, even though I was a reader and talked a good game, I was labeled an “underachiever.”  I didn’t come close to harvesting my potential.

Fortunately, I had some experiences along the way that taught me to become more intent on preparing to perform as compared to just “winging” it.

Once I had a boss tell me that my tendency toward “winging” it and not preparing caused him to be cautious about the assignments I might get.  It was a clear lesson to me that lack of preparation exposes the “holes” in my effort.  I learned that if I was going to achieve my potential, I had to “prepare.”

Some of us are more disciplined than others.  Most of us aren’t expert “preparers.”  It takes a special will to fully prepare every time, and the people you know who do, really stand out.