"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail" - Benjamin Franklin
On the night of September, 26th 1950 the approach for political campaigns changed. 54 years ago to the day, the first televised political debate occurred and the protagonists were the Irish-American Senator, John Kennedy, and the Vice President, Richard Nixon.
In those 60 minutes immortalised by television, the 70 million spectators who tuned in to see the debate had the opportunity to compare their 2 candidates and their proposals. One of them had been a two-term vice president with a vast experience about public affairs –in a time where United States had been engaged in a heated Cold War with the Communist Soviet Union- and the other one, a young Senator who was starting his political career. Political commentators referred to the “stature gap” between the 2 politicians but that debate, and those that followed, reversed the roles and offered an unbeatable advantage to the young less experience candidate because of the preparation he made in advance to guarantee his success.
That night the cameras captured Nixon looking pale, underweight and sweaty (he had a recent hospitalization on his knee which made him look more tired). He also chose a grey suit that made him unnoticed in the black and white TV and refused to apply makeup, confident that he would win the duel.
On the other hand, Kennedy made sure that every aspect of his image and speech were flawless, he used a dark suit to stand out, dedicated time on his tan and image, and spent all day in the Chicago Hotel running through his note cards and preparing the response for the most likely topics to be discussed in the debate.
Many people agree that Kennedy won the elections that night.
That historical presentation give us more than just a political lesson but a broader lesson in life of how important it is to prepare, in order to succeed.
For every sales person, commandment number one of your Sales Bible must be the:
(Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance)...