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March 17, 2008

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Shama Hyder

I love what Alan Weiss has to say about proposals: they are a summation of what you talk about, and not an exploration.

Michelle Golden

Yes, Shama! Thank you. Alan's beliefs on proposals are sage, indeed.

Mike Marn

Very interesting topic. We're actually in the marketing end of things, and that brings even more angst. Frequently, RFPs for marketing services request major analysis, recommendations, suggested budget, media choices if applicable, timing, etc. etc. etc. In effect, they are saying "please do all the work in advance, then if we like it, we might choose you and pay you for it."

As you mention, RFPs are part of doing business, and it can be difficult to pass on an appealing client or industry. And we can try to demonstrate value through case studies, etc. But sometimes, pride or press of client business will force you to leave those ask-for-the-moon RFPs to more-desperate competitors. We just won't devalue our own work by giving it away on "spec."

Michelle Golden

Hi Mike, appreciate your remarks and I couldn’t agree more! We believe an idea has more value than its execution. As such, most of the time, the diagnostic phase and resulting recommendations constitute an engagement in and of itself. Knowing the best way to proceed in each unique circumstance has enormous value. We decline to work with someone who wants a one-size fits all solution because I believe there is no such thing as a generic, but effective, strategy. Because our reputation hinges on the outcome and how the client feels about it, I won’t sell something I don’t feel will have a high likelihood of success.

Sounds like you feel much the same!

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