I had a conversation this week that reminded me of a post I wrote years ago about the importance of preparation. I went back and looked at it. The post was spot on regarding the conversation between my client and me. I revised that post for the current situation because it is a good reminder of how important preparation is.
This week, I called a client to set up a block of time to prepare for a mediation. The client didn’t understand why we needed to meet and thought you just go in and see if the dispute can be settled or not. This common misconception regarding mediation speaks to the importance of preparation.
I explained to the client that the two most important times in a lawsuit are mediation and trial. Mediation is the last time a party has any control over the outcome of a lawsuit because you have no real control when it is in the hands of the judge or jury. Why wouldn’t you prepare for such an important event?
It begs the question as to why you wouldn’t prepare for any important event or conversation, such as a mediation, a year-end meeting with a supervisor regarding performance, salary or bonus issues, a job interview, an important conversation with a child, co-worker, spouse or someone that you care about. Preparation is much better than “winging it.”
Preparation allows you to create the message you want to communicate and will give you a better chance of making sure you and your position(s) are understood. This will put you in a better place to achieve any goals or desired results. It also will bolster your reputation and what others who deal with you think about you. And reputation is everything.
The message is prepare, prepare, prepare, and see where it gets you. As Benjamin Franklin smartly said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
As always, this post and others can be found on my blog, Business Law Guy's Blog.
About the Author: Neal Bookspan is a partner at the Phoenix, Arizona law firm of Jaburg Wilk. He assists clients with business issues, commercial litigation, workouts, and bankruptcy litigation. Neal can be reached at 602.248.1000.