The other day I got a bit upset with a contractor I was working with. I’ll tell you what went down and share a piece of advice that has served me well over the years.
I was preparing for a monthly client strategy session and asked this contractor, we’ll call him Tom, to complete some research and put it all together so I could use it at the meeting.
Where the Problem Starts
When Tom finished the work he sent it over to me. I wasn’t happy. While he had gathered some information and had done the research, it sat disorganized on the page and wasn’t complete.
Little pieces of critical information were missing. A price here, a stat there. They made up maybe 15% of the contents – but without them the document wasn’t ready for the meeting.
A 2 Minute Fix
It wouldn’t have taken Tom long to add this other information in. In fact, he just needed to access the websites that he had already listed and spend a couple more minutes writing down a few more numbers.
So why didn’t he do it? Because Tom is lazy.
It’s not just Tom though. The business world is filled with people that try to take shortcuts.
The Small Stuff Adds Up
The problem with shortcuts is what you skip over. One shortcut on a project might not be a big deal, but a bunch of little ones add up – quality suffers and it reflects poorly on you and your business.
I told Tom to go back and do it properly. I called him “lazy”, maybe I was being a bit strong but I wanted to get the point across.
You see, when you go to a meeting you need to be over prepared.
Too many consultants go to meetings with the bare minimum. The problem is they know what they want to say but they forget to take into account the questions their client may ask them.
How to Ooze Confidence
Being over-prepared gives you confidence. You walk into that meeting with everything in order and no matter what question your client springs on you – more times than not you’re prepared to answer them and have documents to show them.
Next time you’re preparing for a meeting, ask yourself, “Am I really prepared?” If there’s any hesitation … you now know what you got to do!