Showing posts from May, 2020

Why You Should Conduct Lessons Learned After Each Proposal

On Monday, I had the pleasure of presenting a webinar to the APMP Maple Leaf Chapter. In this webinar, I dissected six key tactics to help improve your win rate. These tactics include: Applying a thorough strategy in the opportunities pursued Starting pursuits earlier to gain an understanding of the customer and competitive landscape Documenting the intelligence gained from the capture or sales stage Applying rigor in the bid decision process Making your proposals easy to score C onducting lessons learned so you can understand where you are doing well and where you need to improve . In this week’s article, I do a deep dive into one of those critical tactics: conducting lessons learned. Conducting Lessons Learned Conducting lessons learned is a critical part of the business development lifecycle because it helps companies to understand where they are excelling and where they can improve. This is why following each proposal submission, it’s so important for the te

Reflecting on the Pandemic – How COVID-19 Has Impacted Our Lives So Far

We’re more than ten weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic now, and in some areas, things are slowly beginning to open back up. As we move into a new phase of the pandemic recovery and start to find a new “new normal,” I thought this would be an interesting time to reflect on the pandemic and some its negative and positive impacts to date. Negative Effects As we reflect on the pandemic, I think most of us would agree that it has certainly not been a positive experience overall. We’ve experienced overwhelming levels of COVID related sicknesses and death, increases in mental health issues, and major hits to the economy. Overwhelming Sickness and Death. There have been more than 5.4 million documented COVID-19 cases and more than 345.6 thousand confirmed COVID-19 deaths. And even though things are beginning to open back up, we’re certainly not out of the water yet. Currently, there are still more than 2.7 million documented active cases, with 53,208 of those cases classified as

5 More Must-Know Proposal Automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Tools of 2020

A few weeks ago, I posted an article that highlighted ten must-know proposal automation and artificial intelligence (AI) tools, including: Zbizlink , Patri Bid Score™ , Loopio , VisibleThread , reDock , RFPIO , DraftSpark™ ,  Privia , VirtualProposal Center (VPC), and UplandQvidian . The article sparked great conversation and brought to light some additional proposal tools that should be highlighted. In this week’s article, I provide an overview of five additional proposal automation and/or AI tools available, including their major features and benefits. Atebion LLC. Atebion provides a proposal automation tool that leverages AI and automation capabilities to shred requests for proposals (RFPs); generate compliance matrices and cross-reference compliance matrices; identify Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) clauses; identify risks; support bid/no-bid decisions; perform gap analysis; generate responsibility assignment (RACI) matrices; customize tasks, templates, and l

5 Tips for Clearer Writing

In proposals, clear writing is critical to ensuring the evaluators understand the message you are trying to communicate. Even if you have the most valuable solution, if you can’t clearly articulate the features and benefits of that solution, you won’t have a high chance of winning the work. Shipley demonstrates this reality in their proposal training courses. As part of their combined proposal writing and management workshops, teams evaluate three separate proposal responses. The proposal that is rumored to have the best technical solution is poorly written and disorganized—and very rarely do teams select that proposal to win. Why? Because it’s difficult to score a proposal that is difficult to understand. In this week’s article I present five strategies for clearer writing so evaluators can understand your solution and message and score you appropriately. Use Shorter Sentences I’ll admit, this is an area where I tend to fall short in writing. I like complex sentences, and I

5 Best Practices to Improve Your Proposal Writing

Writing is such a critical component of the proposal process. Because writing for proposals is different than most other writing, it is important to understand how to craft proposal narrative that will resonate and score well with the evaluators. Well-crafted proposals will highlight your message and make it easy for the evaluator to follow our proposal’s logic and main points. That’s why it’s so important to take the time to develop well-written, well-structured proposal responses tailored to the customer and the evaluators. To help highlight your key messages and make your writing easier to score, map RFP requirements into your headings; make key selling points stand out with theme statements, feature and benefit tables, and callout boxes; break up the text so it’s more digestible; substantiate all claims and quantify where possible; and focus on the customer. Map the RFP Requirements into Your Headings Compliance is the first thing evaluators will look for. To make compli