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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "You do not have a lot of time."
I desperately needed this book. Not because I'm not successful; I've won many awards in my field and the last time my employer made me take a cognitive test I astonished them by getting a perfect score. No, I needed this book because I want something more. I want the next level up, the bigger stage. You know the level I'm talking about, the big-gun level. And on that...
Published on January 26, 2008 by CodeMaster Talon

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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too shallow
This book is typical of many business books written by consultants or practitioners who have worked with high-profile celebrities and executives. The author(s) recount the anecdotal specifics of their experiences without translating them into a set of first principles for the concepts or methods they are writing about.
The first chapter of this book provides a nice...
Published on September 19, 2009 by A reader


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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too shallow, September 19, 2009
This review is from: Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin (Paperback)
This book is typical of many business books written by consultants or practitioners who have worked with high-profile celebrities and executives. The author(s) recount the anecdotal specifics of their experiences without translating them into a set of first principles for the concepts or methods they are writing about.
The first chapter of this book provides a nice motivational pep-talk on the importance of preparation. Beyond that, you don't get a lot more out of the book than what you would by reviewing the table of contents. The bulk of each chapter is dedicated to three stories meant to reinforce the subject of the chapter. However, the author doesn't tie these examples back to a set of principles that would better define the concept or method he is discussing. For example, in the chapter "Do a Timeline", he should address specifics such as, what are the essentials of a good timeline? What considerations should be made for the level of detail in a timeline? What are a few techniques for breaking down the work or tasks? His chapter on "Write the Script" had all kinds of potential since I haven't come across that particular idea in other books (as it relates to project preparation).
However, he never really describes the essentials that make up this script. Mr. Shapiro obviously has a rich set of experiences to draw upon. Unfortunately, he needs to develop a set of universal or first principles that define his approach to the general business case.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "You do not have a lot of time.", January 26, 2008
By 
CodeMaster Talon (Orlando, FL United States) - See all my reviews
I desperately needed this book. Not because I'm not successful; I've won many awards in my field and the last time my employer made me take a cognitive test I astonished them by getting a perfect score. No, I needed this book because I want something more. I want the next level up, the bigger stage. You know the level I'm talking about, the big-gun level. And on that level, as one person in this wonderful books states, "EVERYONE is talented." You have to be more than just talented, you have to be prepapred.

And so we have "Dare to Prepare", a brilliant distillation of the anatomy of success. The book urges to you to prepare until failure is not a possibilty, and to not waste time in the wrong types of preparation. I will not outline the tips here, as they so beautifully intergrate into the whole. People from all professions are interviewed, people with nothing in common except wild success and serious, serious preparation skills. The steps to being fully prepared for opportunity if it comes knocking and even if it doesn't flow perfectly into one another; I can safely say there isn't anyone who wouldn't benefit from following them, no matter how good you may think you already are.

That's pretty much it. A short review for me, but there isn't much more I can say. I picked up the book on a whim, began reading before bed in an effort to fall asleep, and ten minutes later was wide-awake, completely wired. Shapiro's little masterpiece will excite you, inspire you, and guide you like nothing I've read in a very long time. And in the Codemaster's book, that gets "Dare to Prepare" the rarely bestowed-

GRADE: A
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Methodical preparation can make the difference between success and failure - and it usually does!, March 18, 2008
I loved this book. I wish I had read this book back when I was a teenager. Better yet, I wish I had remembered to apply its messages when I tried to start my first few businesses. As a SCORE counselor I find myself preaching, yes preaching, to most of my clients about the importance of researching and writing a sound business business plan BEFORE they file for incorporation or register an LLC, get a bank account in the company name, and start generating revenues. And I read this book last night in order to see if I should recommend it to my clients so they MIGHT get the message that a sound busness plan will be their key to success. Now that I've read it - Yes, this is the book a wanta-be entrepreneur should read in order to KNOW they need a sound WRITTEN business plan.

This book has 14 chapters and an appendix:

1. Put me in coach
2. I would like to thank the Lord Jesus Christ and Eric Mangini
3. What's your destination? Understand your objectives
4. Someone, somewhere has done this before. Plan with precedents
5. What's the forecast? Know the alternatives
6. It's in the best interest to know their interests. Define the interests
7. Look before you leap. Set your strategy
8. When the rubber meets the road. Do a timeline
9. The right parts for the right people. Pick your team
10. What you say and how you say it. Write the script
11. The constant preparer. Adjust and learn from your mistakes
12. Confidence
13. Prepare and conquer. A mantra for effective people
14. You can get some satisfaction
Appendix: The preparation principles checklist

Chapters 1 and 2 are kind of an introduction to the book. Chapters 3 through 11 are the various preparation principles that one follows in order to hedge their bets at being successful. All these principles are important to consider when writing a business plan for a new business or doing strategic planning for an existing one. And chapters 12 through 14 cover the benefits one receives from doing the proper preparation.

The material contained in this book is obvious stuff. It's unfortunate that most of us need to be reminded that planning and preparation for a game, whatever game that is, is necessary if we want to do well. Is it a sporting competition? A test in school? A job interview? A management meeting? A contract negotiation? A closing? Qualifying for a loan? Starting a business? Or selling a business? All the big things I have accomplished in my lifetime I planned for and done the required preparation in order to succeed. Read this book and be reminded that you too must plan and prepare for the things that are important to you. 5 stars!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining Stories & Tangible Tools, January 30, 2008
By 
Success stories from the people interviewd by the authors are what makes this book really come to life. Even though the people profiled in this book are from so many diverse professions, the power of preparation carries each of them to the top. I especially like the book's core philosophy - preparation is the only aspect over a situation that one has control. Shapiro and Jordan have cleanly mapped out a systematic approach to preparation that everyone can put into place immediately after finishing this book. They even give you the preparation checklist as an appendix. I use it for every one of my sales calls, and I have noticed a BIG increase in confidence, which has allowed me to close more deals.

Dare to Prepare is probably the single most useful how to book I have ever read. And the stories are entertaining, so in addition to the tangible tools the book lends, it is also a quick read. If you're looking to improve upon your confidence so that you can perform at a higher level, check out this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Almost complete anecdotes, good message, July 5, 2008
By 
Mark Zeller (Towson, MD United States) - See all my reviews
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As a local of Baltimore, I enjoyed reading a local author's input. As a past Orioles fan of our baseball team, Ron Shapiro was one of the few people I still admire and trust, from a "press" or "in the news" standpoint.

As a professional, I test hardware. I am new to this line of work and needed a base from which to learn. This book helped outline a gameplan for me to approach my day-to-day work load and also look long term at where I want to be as an employee of a Fortune 500 company.

Per the title of my review, the anecdotes Ron uses are from cool people, some everyday "Joe's" and some superstar, living the high-life people. The anecdotes apply to each idea he presents, which make them relevant. However, some of these anecdotes are very high-level and don't hammer out many details. For instance, one person might say, "You have to make a plan and stick to it!" That's great, but what was your plan and how did you execute?

I recommend this book for anyone, as the material is transitive and can be applied to any situation in life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You do not have the time to NOT read this book!!, July 27, 2009
This review is from: Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin (Paperback)
Never had time to do it right ... but always have time to do it over??

This is an excellent book on how to prepare. As a project manager, I have always been a list maker and planner, but this book helps to focus the planning effort and even proves a simple planning worksheet.

I particularly enjoyed the layout of the book. It was very well organized for the learning process. The first chapter started with an overview of what the author planned to discuss, provided some real life examples of the importance of planning, and ended with a bullet point summary of what was covered in the chapter. Each succeeding chapter covered a single point of the planning process, with an overview of how to perform that point, some real life examples of the process in use, and bullet point summaries of the materials covered in that chapter.

The book is easy and enjoyable to read. I would suggest making your own copy of the worksheet in the appendix and using it regularly for your own preparation needs.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I dare you to read this book!, June 20, 2008
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I am not a natural leader, but "Dare to Prepare," by Ronald M. Shapiro, gave me great insights on how preparation can create success. Following his outline minimizes time spent in the nebulous world of ideas; instead, he gives practical information to make those ideas a reality. Easy to read, well organized, practical advice that almost anyone can use. I stumbled across this book in the local library, and as I read it, I realized that I had to have my own copy. Now I refer to it as I plan meetings and projects for the workgroup I chair at church. I can't believe how much more efficient I am as a result of following Shapiro's suggestions. Business settings, civic/religious groups, social groups, even personal life decisions can all benefit from your reading this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Prepare Methodically, April 23, 2009
By 
This review is from: Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin (Paperback)
My title is what I took most from this book. The examples and Mr. Shapiro's experiences explain how methodical preparation works and how, if not done correctly, can easily set you up for failure.

What I like best about authors in similar books is that they admit that they have failed and what they did to get better.

This is a book I will definitely return to!

Enjoy
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring audiobook - nothing new or insightful here, June 3, 2011
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Let me clarify my review for the audio book. First, the voice of the reader is very monotonous and boring. I could use the CDs to help me get to sleep, seriously. It was grueling to go thorugh 6 CDs. It was very hard to concentrate. I am an avid reader and have listened to dozens of business audiobooks. So, careful, don't listen to this audiobook on the car - you may fall asleep!

Second, I didn't find the content to be very useful or inisghtful. I agree with the othe rreviewr's comment 'It's too shallow, typical of a consultant". Surely, preparing is important - even critical to be successful, but that's hardly a novel idea - more like d'uh!

I found the book had very little in terms of ideas or a framework for preparing better. A lot of the stories were unrelated, boring and full of irrelevant personal details. This is one of those - a 2-page magazine article would have been enough to capture all the value in this book, the rest is fill-in to meet a page target by the publisher.

There are plenty of good business books out there, don't waste your time here.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dare to Read!, December 14, 2009
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I read this book while in the middle of interviewing for jobs, post graduate school. Shapiro paints a black and white picture of successful preparation and inspires action to thoroughly prepare before any meaningful task. Read and enjoy the stories of other successful people who dared to prepare. I give this book five stars because without it, I perhaps would not have been as prepared for the opportunities I have today.
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Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin
Dare to Prepare: How to Win Before You Begin by Ronald M. Shapiro (Paperback - February 24, 2009)
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