Preparing Your Company To Write Proposals

So you want to jump right into writing your proposals, but it is better to prepare your company first. Organisation preparation is vital so that you can:
− Decide what you do best and only chase the potential work that you have a good chance of winning.
− Discover which companies have potential projects that require your capabilities.
− Sell these capabilities to the companies in a way that makes you stand out from your competitors.
− Minimise the risk of undertaking the work so that you don’t give away or lose all your profits.
− Maximise the return from your work and ensure that you are not throwing away your hard earned profits on lost causes.

Your preparation will consist of the following activities:
− Reviewing your existing resources.
− Defining your core capabilities.
− Establishing your potential.
− Understanding your differences from your competitors.
− Looking at what partnerships you could make.
− Establishing your Costing Model.
− Collating together your standard documents.

Reviewing Your Existing Resources
Sit down with a cup of tea or coffee, a pen and paper and maybe a couple of trusted associates or employees and work out the answers to the following:
− What do you do best?
− What are you staff’s key skills?
− What key resources do you have?
− Do you have any spare resources or staff time that you are not currently using?
− What spare capacity in equipment, down time or manufacturing time do you have?
− Can you easily, cheaply and quickly expand your product range or produce more of your existing products?
− Are some of your resources underutilised and can you think of something profitable and efficient to do with them?
− Can you quickly and profitably take on staff and resources to meet new business that you are chasing?
− Do you do something that your competitors do not do?
− What do you need to do to encourage your company to expand and can you easily obtain it?
− What can you do that which is totally “off the wall” or unexpected, but still uses your existing resources?
− Are some of your staff underutilised and can you think of something for them to do?

You should now have a list of your existing, or easily obtainable resources.

Establishing Your Potential
Similarly, you need to examine your existing capabilities and work out a natural progression of what you can potentially offer. Look at what you think that your organisation could do if it had the opportunity. For example look at:
− What would be a natural progression from your current work?
− Is there a complimentary service or product that you could offer?
− Is there a natural upgrade or extra that you could provide?
− Are there any goods or services that people ask you for that you don’t currently have but you could profitably provide?
− What future products are you researching or developing, that you want to sell?
− What do you think that you can offer another company that they may need?
− What are you great at that your customers would like?
− Is there a hole in the market that you can fill?
− What do you think that other companies may require from you?
− Are you known for something that is sought after?
− Are there any markets would you like to develop or be more prominent in?
− What would you like your company to be remembered or renowned for?
− What can you can do to you make yourself stand out from your competitors?

Understand Your Differences
Now have a look at a few of your close competitors that you are likely to be bidding against.
− Do you know why you are the best company in your field and can you write down truthfully why?
− Do you know who your competitors are and what they do?
− What are your differentiators that set you apart from your competitors? That is, what do you do that is different and better that what they do.
− What is the best thing that you do?
− What are you renowned for and it the same as the best thing that you do?
− Do you have the only one of a kind product and can you change the product slightly to meet another market?
− Are you soon to bring something to market, or should you think about doing this?

Answering all of the above questions should ensure that you understand what your company does best and hopefully better than your competitors. Taking some time to list your resources and core capabilities as this will be very useful when you start writing your proposals.

© Copyright 2015 Biz Guru Ltd
Lee Lister writes as The Biz Guru, for a number of web sites where she provides assistance for the business entrepreneur. She is known as the Bid Manager and is a recognized bid management expert.

If you would like more help and assistance in writing your tender or PQQ, visit: or read Proposal Writing For Smaller Businesses which can be found on Amazon and other major book sites.

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