I always think of bidding as being like Alice entering the rabbit hole. It’s easy not to go in too far, or to stop at a tricky hurdle. But if you really put in the effort to assemble your allies, find the solutions and make the connections, you’ll start to see things in a new way – and that’s when you reach your Wonderland. (Otherwise, you’re just stuck in a dark tunnel wondering how you got here…)
I’ve spent over a decade in the world of competitive bids, and it’s fair to say I learned everything the hard way. What you should and shouldn’t say. What does and doesn’t add value. Practices that work, and practices doomed to failure. But after years of bidding across most of the major public sector areas, and for a huge range of private sector clients too, I’ve built up plenty of knowledge about how to get the best out of every opportunity.
My favourite thing about bidding has always been getting under the skin of an opportunity – going full CSI on it to get not just the basic facts, but every last little clue about what the buyer really wants and how it should be served back to them. Bid approaches and bid responses turn on the tiniest things. Delivering that ‘light bulb’ moment where a client knows how to move forward, or what bear traps to avoid – that’s what I’m here to do.
When I’m not working, I’m thinking about food (cooking or eating it) and books, singing with my local choir or indulging my love of quizzes.
I’m up to my elbows in editing bid responses. Bonus points if the clock’s approaching deadline.
Every time someone has said to me ‘I’d not thought about it like that until you said X.’
Has me wedged equally between Red and Blue (possibly explaining why my favourite colour is purple)
I’d want bidding recognised for the complex career it is. It’s more than sales, or copywriting, or number-crunching, and it’s almost the opposite of its evil twin ‘procurement’. Why do just one of those, when bidding gives you them all?