Preparation (principle)

Preparation is a management principle whereby people get ready for a final product or for a successful experience. Preparation means "a substance especially prepared".[1] Preparation is a proceeding or readiness for a future event as a goal and an acceptable accomplished final outcome.[2] It is to make something (e.g., child, food, procedures, machines) acceptable before you give it to others.[3]


The word "preparation" comes from late Middle English (1350–1400): via Old French from Latin praeparationem praeparatio(n-) "a making ready". It is from a past participle stem of praeparāre meaning to prepare; from prae "before" + parare "make ready".[3] The word "prepare" means to put in proper readiness beforehand and has a relationship to the word "parent."[2]


The concept of preparation is where one prepares (makes ready) for something. An example of a preparatory process is when a high school student prepares for a higher education by taking the appropriate college prep courses. High school students can also take certain courses that will enable them to be prepared for the work force upon graduation.[4] Certain school courses teach preparation for choosing a career.[5] The discipline of old-school step-by-step meticulous preparing as getting ready for something leads to ultimate accomplishment.[6]


Preparation is preparing and getting ready materials and equipment before an event takes place.[7][8][9] Many times a checklist is the result of someone not doing the proper beforehand steps needed before a major event is to occur (i.e., airplane takeoff, medical procedure) and later disastrous results happen because of this lack of preparedness.[10] Meetings should involve people being first notified so they can do preparation ahead of the meeting time.[11]

Preparation involves a fact-finding mission in getting a qualified person for a position in a company. This includes not only the characteristics of the potential new employee but the parameters of a particular company including its policies and dynamics.[12] The person as a business partner should know how to solve problems, create opportunities, and use the company’s strengths in a strategic way.[13] Organizations involved in teaching must prepare new knowledge to teach individuals to grow. This preparation of new information and teaching self-motivation then involves forming knowledge acquisition plans.[14] On the job training engages people in activities that are practical in preparation for an improvement in their career skills. To get an individual self-motivated one should be taught how certain information and preparation of specific skills will benefit them personally. A method of preparation is when a manager will explain what is expected as an end result and some possible ways to accomplish that and get the employee engaged in real life situations.[15]


Having a well defined preparation system will increase one's chances of becoming a strong competitor.[16] Preparation is to harness your passion of something with a system of developing steps to accomplish a good outcome.[17] For example, Wikipedians do certain steps in preparing to create a new article.[18] Preparation is used in business transactions and management.[10] Professionals in all fields that achieve their goals are masters at preparing and putting their ducks in a row.[19]

Many times an important part of preparation is the concept that time is of the essence and applies especially to contract law.[20] Preparation allows time needed to do the right steps sequentially in the correct order, instead of panicking and doing quick steps haphazardly with no thought as to what should come first and what should come next.[20] Preparation time gives better results as a conclusion where one can achieve what's desired.[20] Avoiding proper preparation through scheming short-cuts in the long run doesn't pay and will give unwanted results.[21]

Beforehand planning

The concept of "preparation" has a Venn relationship with the concept of "planning"; the two concepts are separate but closely intertwined.[22] In scholarly use, the concept of "planning" is often associated with long-tailed, open-ended processes of chronological foresight, while the concept of "preparation" is more closely tied to immediate steps taken to achieve a tangible, closed-ended goal.[22] For example, a dietician may counsel her clients on the elements of meal "planning," and after internalizing this training the client may utilize his meal-planning skills in the immediate task of preparing a meal.[22] In business use, "planning" is a management principle to set up details to achieve a goal,[23] while the concept of "preparation" is tied to contemplation of a future event by making something ready now.[24] An example here would be merchandising where the preparation is the buying of the merchandise and getting it ready in the storage area and the planning is the goal of getting the merchandise shelved and sold to the customer to make a profit.[25] In salesmanship use, "planning" is the principle to set up a strategy (i.e., techniques) to close the sale, while the concept of "preparation" is tied to contemplation of the completion of the sale and making ready now the assumption that it will happen.[26] An example here is the preparation to ask questions to find out the customer's needs so that the plan to close the sale will happen.[26]

Benjamin Disraeli's viewpoint on preparation was that the secret of success in life is when a person is ready for his once in a lifetime opportunity.[27] Robert Louis Stevenson's viewpoint was that politics is a profession for which no preparation is necessary.[28] GM’s Alfred Sloan believes that with the preparation of sound facts that sound policies can be put into place.[11] Sun Tzu's philosophy on war was he will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.[29]

See also



  1. "preparation". Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper. 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  2. "preparation". Dictionary.Com. 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
  3. Shapiro 2009, p. 6.
  4. Kennedy 2006, pp. 6–11.
  5. Baker 2005, pp. 299–333.
  6. Shapiro 2009, p. 1.
  7. Cialdini 2010, p. 71.
  8. Klein 2004, pp. 34–37.
  9. Kyriacou 1998, p. 16.
  10. Shapiro 2009, p. 4.
  11. Gates 2009, p. 20.
  12. Khurana 2011, pp. 134–5.
  13. Gilley 2007, pp. 186–9.
  14. Gilley 2000, pp. 130–9.
  15. Buckingham 2005, pp. 121–2.
  16. Shapiro 2009, p. 36.
  17. Shapiro 2009, p. 19.
  18. Ayers, Matthews & Yates 2008, p. 162.
  19. Shapiro 2009, p. 10.
  20. Shapiro 2009, p. 5.
  21. Shapiro 2009, pp. 22–25.
  22. Harnack & Story 1998, pp. 995–1000.
  23. "planning". WebFinance, Inc. 2014. Retrieved 2014-03-07.
  24. "preparation". WebFinance, Inc. 2014. Retrieved 2014-03-07.
  25. "The Differences Between Merchandising & Stocking". azcentral. Gannett Company. Retrieved 2014-03-07.
  26. Bettger 2009, pp. 40–55.
  27. Maxwell 1998, p. 29.
  28. Lederer 2007, p. 32.
  29. "Attack by Stratagem". Sun Tzu's Art of War. John Watson, LLC. 2014. Retrieved 2014-09-12.


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