“Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation.” — Robert H. Schuller

It seems obvious when someone wins an elite level road race that substantial preparation happened before the athlete stepped to the start line. There was preparation by the athlete and also by the race directors.  For example, the NYC marathon has over 100 year-round staff and more than 6000 volunteers who organize the race many, many months before the runners arrive on race day.

Despite this obvious truth, many organizations do not put the proper preparation into being ready for the starting line of their projects.

Executives must answer a very important question before the project begins.

They must consider the priority of the project in contrast to all the other projects that are running.  What is the expected Return on Investment of this Project?  How important is it to the business? How risky is it?

If they decide this is the highest priority project, then all other actions should follow to ensure that the project is ready to run a world-class race.

If this project is low-priority in comparison to others, it can be given preparation akin to that of a leisurely Sunday fun-run.

Either way, the preparation is not an optional part of the process.

How do the most important projects in your organization start?

Yours in the calm pursuit of excellence,

Alan Willett

PS:  My 100+ Questions book is now available for Kindle.  There are good questions in this book to help guide insights early in the development process.

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