Insights Blog

Confessions of a proposal production expert – desktop publishing (Part 1 of 5)

In a previous series on our Insights blog (search “Proposal production across the business development life cycle”), Briana Coleman, PPM.APMP explained the production best practices all companies should perform during each phase of the business development (BD) life cycle. In this series, she’ll dive deeper into production elements and share war stories and her favorite tips. These production elements include: Desktop publishing Graphic design Editing Printing and assembly Delivery Let’s begin with desktop publishing, the art of formatting a document to help communicate a message and for ease of reading. Tip 1: Start early Desktop publishing is not a race at the end. Think about the risks for page limits! As a desktop publisher, I’ve received documents 24 hours before they were due, with the instructions to “work my magic and cut five pages…” Don’t put that kind of pressure on your desktop publisher. Instead, begin desktop publishing and editing … Continue reading Confessions of a proposal production expert – desktop publishing (Part 1 of 5)

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7 more changes experts would make to the BD, capture, and proposal process

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” –Alan Watts In this wrap-up to my 3-part series asking capture and proposal experts to share their responses to the question, “If you could change one thing about the business development, capture, or proposal life cycle or process, what would that be?,” my industry colleagues share their practical insights and suggestions. I would end the search for the holy grail of a plug-and-play repeatable process for BD, capture, or proposals. Principles apply and rules exist. It’s just that for any given opportunity, it might make sense to ignore or break half of them. –Wendy Frieman, APMP Fellow and Principal Consultant, Lohfeld Consulting Group The proposal process is only as good as its leadership. Veteran proposal managers demand a smooth process and usually get it – building in risk mitigation … Continue reading 7 more changes experts would make to the BD, capture, and proposal process

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5 proposal yoga poses to add to your life cycle

Yoga is a great way to reduce stress, increase flexibility, and regain composure – all highly beneficial to the harried proposal professional. Lisa Pafe suggests some ways to incorporate these yoga-induced benefits into your proposal life cycle. You don’t need to roll out a yoga mat in order to relax. Just take 10 minutes at your desk and try these five proposal yoga poses. Remember to ease into these poses and stop immediately if you feel any pain or discomfort. 1. Kickoff sun salutation  Greet the day (or the sunset). Stand up beside your desk, shoes off. Slowly raise your arms above your head breathing in through your nose until your palms touch. Then, slowly swan dive down to the floor breathing out through your nose, and letting your head, neck, and arms dangle. You can shake your head yes and no to further relieve tension. If hamstrings are too … Continue reading 5 proposal yoga poses to add to your life cycle

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6 changes experts would make to the BD, capture, and proposal process

“Nothing endures but change. Change is the only constant.” –Heraclitus of Ephesus Business transformation, process improvement, continual improvement, business process improvement. Call it what you will. The gist of the matter is that we constantly tinker with the “current state” trying to make it better, faster, more efficient, easier, or more reliable so that we can achieve our desired results. I asked a number of capture and proposal experts to share their responses to the question, “If you could change one thing about the business development, capture, or proposal life cycle or process, what would that be?” Here are their responses – some eminently achievable, some wonderful end-state aspirations. If I were “King,” I would insist that a “yes” bid decision be made only after hard-headed, comprehensive data collection and customer dialog, resulting in a realistic chance to win. There is far too much irrationality in making bid decisions and … Continue reading 6 changes experts would make to the BD, capture, and proposal process

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