9 Key factors for winning proposals

One Monday morning, I received a frantic email from a friend who’d been interviewing for proposal manager positions. “Beth, what’s your 30-second response to what makes a proposal compelling?” She’d been asked that question during her interview and thought she’d flubbed the answer. She wanted to hear my perspective so she could prepare for her other interviews later that day and the next.

I paused for a moment to consider the question and then banged out this response, “A well-developed value proposition and (technical) solution supported by excellent pre-RFP capture development and client intimacy. A cleanly designed proposal with relevant, clear, insightful, professionally developed graphics.”

It’s incredible when you think of the tremendous number of labor hours, dedication, money, expertise, education, and opportunity costs that underlie that 28-word response. The lessons we’ve all learned over the years fill thousands of books and PowerPoint presentations designed to share our pains and successes – and causes for both – with others in our profession.

I’ve distilled those best practices and lessons learned into my 9 Key Factors for Winning Task Order Proposals presentation (listen to the audio tip at https://www.lohfeldconsulting.com/news-knowledge/2011/07/audio-tip-best-practices-for-responding-to-fast-turnaround-proposals/ and download a copy of my presentation at https://www.lohfeldconsulting.com/news-knowledge/2011/03/creating-a-winning-task-order-proposal-process/), and they apply equally (if not more compellingly) to creating winning – and compelling – non-task order proposals.

By Beth Wingate