I would say that the first question may depend upon the context of the situation and environment. If you have a configuration that is ready to deploy and test, then you could theoretically stand up the switch and setup a management IP in order to transfer an existing configuration via TFTP to the switch and then reload it. However, if the switch has it's default configuration in place you must first connect to the switch via a Console cable before you even begin the process of transferring an existing configuration via TFTP. In most cases one would perform configuration and testing in a lab environment and then implement that configuration into a production device.
For the second question... #2 is definitely last. It is a little unclear as to which 'cable connections' are referenced in #3. It makes sense to have your console cable in place and then attach the power cable and power on the device. That way you won't potentially miss any of the boot sequence and IOS initialization output that requires the console cable and terminal application. I would normally do it in the order you suggest, but other people may have a different take.