Dale Carnegie once said
"First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst."
Good advice, especially for someone who wants to be leader of the United States. Some don't always heed good advice however, which appears to be the case with former Presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
points out that Romney failed to prepare for or anticipate the criticism he received after he neglected to mention the troops in Afghanistan during his Republican National Convention speech. When the topic was brought up during a Meet the Press
interview, Romney said:
"I find it interesting that people are curious about mentioning words in a speech."
According to Time
, during the final weeks leading up to the election, the Romney campaign prepared a transition team, dubbed “The Readiness Project,” which consisted of more than 100 people. However, the team appeared to forget to "ready" themselves for at least two scenarios according to various news reports.
The Christian Science Monitor
reported on Tuesday that when asked about his speeches for the evening, Romney responded by saying he'd only written one speech.
During an interview earlier on Tuesday, President Obama stated he had both a victory and concession speech prepared because
“you always have two speeches prepared because you can't take anything for granted.”
Once President Obama was declared the winner for the 2012 Presidential election, television media outlets began going back and forth between to the two campaign headquarters, getting reactions from the crowd and speculating on when each candidate would address waiting supporters. As the minutes ticked by, more and more questions emerged as to why it was taking so long for Romney to deliver his concession speech.
Romney and his campaign staff also neglected to take care of more technical issues, such as their "transition" website.
On Wednesday, Romney's "transition" website went live, viewable for several hours. The website, first discovered by Political Wire
, included links for The President Elect
, Believe in America,
The Huffington Post
contacted SolutionStream, the company that created the website, and asked about it being viewable to the public. Shortly after that, the full website was no longer visible.
After it was clear that Romney would not be the President-elect, a senior Romney advisor told CBS
"We went into the evening confident we had a good path to victory. I don't think there was one person who saw this coming."
Another senior staffer said:
"We just felt, 'where's our path? There wasn't one."
When speaking about the Obama supporter turnout, a Romney campaign official told Daily Kos
“We didn’t think they’d turn out more of their base vote than they did in 2008, but they smoked us. It’s unbelievable that that they turned out more from the African-American community than in 2008. Somehow they got ‘em to vote.”
Perhaps the Romney campaign did not expect voters to care about facts. After the Republican convention, fact checkers pointed out several "false and misleading statements. The Romney campaign responded by dismissing the comments according to the Washington Post.
When criticized about airing ads that were not factual, a member of the campaign said
"We're not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers."
When the path of Hurricane Sandy became evident, President Obama ordered FEMA to be prepared and staged in New Jersey, ensuring assistance would be immediately available if requested. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie praised
the President for his response and leadership.
A lack of anticipation and preparation may or may not have lead to Romney's failed bid at the White House. It is fairly certain that it did not help however. As the great Confucius once said
"Success depends upon previous preparation, and without such preparation there is sure to be failure."