Tag Archives: Business Development

The Work To the Left of Proposal, part 2

PM Commentary by Stacy Goff, ProjectExperts CEO.
In Part 1 of this 2-part series, we discussed the importance of the actions of the first 10% of any project or program, the Buyer/Seller relationship in any complex project, and the role of Business Development in assuring success in each of those areas. In this part, we disclose a bit more of the attraction of Business Development, then introduce another key role that every complex project or program requires.

The Attraction of Business Development
Why should Project and Program Managers include and embrace the role of Business Development (BD) Managers in our initiatives? Several reasons, from our perspective. First, despite our best efforts, PM has been relegated from strategic to tactical in too many organizations. It was not always this way. In an earlier era, the PM was the “go-to person” who not only participated in the analysis of changes needed to establish competitive strategies, but also planned those needed to implement them.

Over the last 30 years we have seen and lamented that we we need to, as we say in our article, “Let’s Cure The Dumbing Down of Project Management”. While we came to PM from a Strategic Planning background, most others do not. And that is where BD comes in. Just as with Strategic Planning, BD is wide and thin; Project Management tends to be narrow and deep. A match made in heaven. Not only that, PMs could learn a thing or two about getting close to customers, alignment to organization strategy, and fixation with business results. On the other hand, this divergence in perspectives helps explain why some PMs don’t get along well with BD Managers. Continue reading

The Work To the Left of Proposal, part 1

PM Commentary by Stacy Goff, ProjectExperts CEO.
What is the work to the left of Proposal? The answer depends on your role, your program or project, and your perspective. For example, although many programs involve proposals, many projects do not. In engagements that involve proposals, the majority of success often depends on the work that occurs before the Proposal is ever signed. What is that work, who performs it, and why is it so essential to both Proposal and engagement success? Let us begin by clarifying the actions that occur early in a successful engagements that do not involve contracts, then expand to the more-complex engagements that do involve contracts. Note that this complexity of multiple organizations in contracts is a key distinction between two Advanced Performance-Competence-based certifications, certified Project Manager (IPMA-USA’s IPMA-C) and certified Senior Project Manager (IPMA-USA’s IPMA-B).

Engagements Not Involving Contracts
Many engagements are intended for internal implementation, and do not significantly rely on proposals and contracts. In these projects, the actions that take place in the window of opportunity between inspiration and the beginning of Requirements elicitation are primary factors of success. For example, we’ve shown for years that the first 10% of any project or program’s effort is responsible for 90% of its success. Continue reading