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Showing posts from May, 2019

5 Ways to Become More Marketable in the Proposal Field

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In the past, people didn’t typically pursue proposals as a profession—people fell into proposals. People rarely knew what they were getting into when they supported their first proposal—but once management found out they were good at it—it was all over from there.
However, more recently we have started to see a shift in this paradigm. The proposal field is becoming a targeted career path for young professionals entering the workforce. Companies are offering proposal universities for recent college graduates. Universities are developing centers for government contracting with focused course curricula. Proposal courses are now offered in established professional writing programs. And students are learning the skillsets they need to succeed in the industry well before applying for their first job.
But, because this is a relatively new trend, young professionals may experience a lack of guidance on how exactly to successfully pursue a proposal career once they enter the workforce. As on…

How to Make the Most of Bid and Proposal Con

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Bid and Proposal Con. It’s like an amusement park for the proposal professional—and this year, it’s fittingly located in Orlando! Bid and Proposal Con is a time where I dedicate four straight days to my professional development. I get to reunite with people I haven’t seen in months. I get to meet new people and make new connections. And I have the opportunity to learn new best practices, further hone my professional skills, and share my own proposal insights.
But with so much jam packed into four days, Bid and Proposal Con can also be overwhelming. Especially for those attending for the first time, you may not have any idea about how to take full advantage of this exciting event. Though I am a Bid and Proposal Con novice compared to some of my colleagues, I have developed some strategies over the years to get the most out of the conferences that I can. I share these tips below, and I hope that others out there will chime as well!
Prepare Similar to proposal development, preparation …

Back to the Future – My Recent Experience Being Transported to a 1980s Proposal Shop

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One of my favorite parts of being a consultant is having the opportunity to work with a range of different companies, proposal shops, and even other proposal consultants. This enables me to observe and learn new best practices, work across different fields, and meet a variety of interesting people with an array of backgrounds. However, I am also frequently put into situations where I am reminded of how NOT to do proposals. This week I am sharing with you a recent experience working with a team that has failed to adjust their processes to match current procurement strategies within the federal space.
Note: normally I would avoid sharing such a specific experience as to avoid potential offense, but based on conversations I had with the leadership of this group, this company is acutely aware of the need to adjust their proposal processes.
My Experience Riding in the DeLorian A few months ago, I was asked to travel to a remote area to support a proposal effort. Always up for a new experi…

An Open Letter to the Friends and Families of Proposal Professionals

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As proposal professionals, most of us well understand the idiosyncrasies of the profession. We have become accustomed to the extreme ebbs and flows of the workload, the heightened stress levels leading up to final submission, and the internal panic of changes within the three days leading up to your scheduled printing.
As we all know, this fluctuation in workload and stress level can negatively affect our personal relationships. If your personal lives are anything like mine, our partners, friends, and families aren’t always the most understanding when we have to work on vacations, change our plans because of a work fire-drill, or even wake up extra early on a weekend to make the schedule for the day work. We often receive resistance, side commentary about how much it sucks that we have to work, and other pushback from our loved ones. This can be polarizing, especially when stress levels are at their highest. So I wanted to send out this reminder for our loved ones, especially when o…