“Oh, by the way, this is a must win deal for us,” my boss said as we concluded our conversation. The RFP had dropped, and I was to lead the final proposal effort. The company was getting ready to graduate from the small business world. Like many, we were looking to win as many small business IDIQ vehicles as we could to cushion our transition. The opportunity fit within our core competencies—but with an agency and government sector new to us. While there had been some pre-RFP activity and team building, it was focused on smaller companies familiar with the sector, but not with the agency. My work was cut out for me! Carefully considering the situation, I determined we needed to do three things to win: Fully understand the customer’s needs, not just their requirements. Propose a strong solution to meet both the requirements and the needs. Build in … Continue reading Winning “must win” deals
There are anywhere from four to 16 different personality types depending on your Google search results. In the context of proposal color team reviews, proposal managers and review team leads have probably encountered quite a medley of non-constructive participants who seem to do everything in their power to impede progress. Adding to this problem is the increase in virtual review meetings. When reviewers are not physically present, they often exhibit different (ruder) personality types than they would in person. Here are six personality types that I’ve witnessed and six tips for how to deal with them. 1. The Dominator This reviewer takes over the meeting; straying off the planned agenda and timeline; voicing their opinions and recommendations first, foremost, loudest; and often interrupting others. They may even stray off topic, going off on tangents that serve no purpose. If the Dominator is the proposal manager’s direct or indirect boss, it … Continue reading Are personalities ruling your color team reviews?
Date/time: March 22, 2018 at 2:40 pm Location: Cobb Energy Performance Arts Center (CEPAC), Atlanta Proposal best practices dictate that we hold color team reviews — Blue, Pink, Red, and Gold — practically the entire rainbow. Yet, often our proposal reviews prevent us from successfully reaching the finish line for three primary reasons. First, typical review teams are bloated with unprepared, un-briefed, unqualified, and/or uninterested reviewers. Second, our proposal reviews place incorrect focus on the likes and dislikes of the reviewers rather than on how customer proposal evaluators will score and rank proposals. Third, we rarely give reviewers enough time to perform their assignments effectively. This presentation will present and solve these problems, with ample audience polling and discussion. Click to learn more Lisa Pafe, Vice President at Lohfeld Consulting Group, CPP APMP Fellow and PMP, has 25+ years’ capture and proposal experience. She served as President of the APMP-National Capital … Continue reading Are your proposal reviews derailing the win? APMP SPAC 2018 Presentation | Lisa Pafe
It’s Thursday. Time for another proposal color team review. The Proposal Manager is faced with one of these all-too-familiar scenarios. Scenario 1: Reviewers call the baby ugly The color team reviewers conclude that the proposal stinks. They don’t really know why, but they don’t like it. They offer recommendations, some of which are actionable, some of which are compliant, but none of which improve the proposal quality. Some of the reviewers never read the RFP thoroughly, so their comments must be taken with a grain of salt. Scenario 2: Reviewers suggest improving the win themes The review team couldn’t find any win themes. They recommend that the proposal team goes back to the drawing board and come up with features, benefits and proofs. However, since the capture team never briefed reviewers on Voice of the Customer, they provide no counsel on which of these win themes would resonate with reviewers. … Continue reading Are your proposal review teams derailing the win?