A Sample RFP Response Format (w/ Commentary)

sample RFP template

  A little while back we posted an article about writing a reply to an RFP (Request for Proposal), which provided a basic outline for responding to potential clients.  Since then, we have received a lot of questions from the MRH community asking for details on formats to use as well as what sort of sections and content to include.  So, we wanted

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Managing Your Customer That Misbehaves in the B2B Space

dealing with bad customers

Isn’t the Customer Always Right? Actually, no, they aren’t!  In the B2B space, we often find ourselves working with clients and customers to develop and sell our products and services.  And yet, sometimes, things do not always go as planned.  I recently paid a visit to one customer who has started to change the rules as they go.  Despite the contractual commitments

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Negotiating in China: 11 Essential Tips to Securing Business

contracts in china

Navigate the Challenges of Contract Negotiations in the People’s Republic   A Fortune 200 executive once told me “No CEO wants it on his or her watch that they missed out on China.” It goes without saying that the world’s largest marketplace is a force to be reckoned with. Having recently returned from a trip to China as part of some large

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7 Types of Capture Strategies That Help You Win

types of capture strategies

A Good Capture Strategy is More Than Just a Good Price Last week, I sat through a disappointing capture strategy meeting.  The sales manager responsible for the territory was presenting a new proposal to the management team and walked us through the opportunity.  Financially, the business case looked good.  The level of risk seemed low, and the proposal was for a customer

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The Art of the Executive Summary

Executive Summary

How to Create an Executive Summary Raise your hand if you have ever sat through a presentation and walked away not understanding its message.  Now, raise your hand if you’ve ever asked an employee to give you a project briefing, only for them to bury you in data, facts and graphics.  Finally, raise your hand if you’ve ever picked up

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7 Reasons Why Your Research and Development Is Falling Short

preliminary design review

Technology Development Tips for Product Managers In today’s marketplace there is ever-growing pressure on companies to remain innovative and for them to bring new products and services to customers. But in order for your research and development efforts to be successful, your objectives need to be focussed and must target your “big bets.” Moreover, a successful research and development campaign

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Writing a Winning Response to an RFP

managers resource handbook

How to Gain an Edge in the B2B Space When it comes to doing business between companies, typically referred to as business-to-business, or B2B, most opportunities and contracts are generated through a process of bid solicitation.  Companies looking to contract services or support will often issue what is known as a Request for Proposal (RFP) to seek information from various companies and

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Can Your Competitor be Your Partner?

managers resource handbook

A Case Study in Competitor Analysis and Strategy Note to Reader: Competitor names are changes for privacy reasons.   Last month, I was invited by a client to participate in a visit to some of their customers. The purpose of the trip was to meet with some key customers as part of a regular visit. In addition, the client, Acme

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Unlike Pizza Toppings, More Marketing is Not Always Better

“Unlike pizza toppings, more marketing is not always better.”  I heard this phrase on a radio show not too long ago, and thought it was a stroke of genius.  There are a myriad of marketing channels out there, some free, some expensive.  Marketing exists in a variety of forms such as radio ads, clever roadside billboards, or simply the printed

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You Can’t Be the Worst at Everything: How Understanding Your Value Proposition Can Increase Revenue

managers resource handbook

Companies compete on a daily basis for business and revenue.  Whether you’re a small business, big business, B2B or B2C firm, you will compete every day for the next sale, the next contract or the next service appointment. It goes without saying, though, that not all businesses are the same.  Some businesses are more expensive than others.  Some will have

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How Are You Communicating With Your Customers?

  When it comes to working with customers, there are numerous ways to make a lasting impression.  Sometimes a friendly tone of voice over the phone is all it takes to win a customer over.  Perhaps your quick response time is all the customer needs to give you their business.  And in some industries, taking on some level of risk

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What Your Customers REALLY Want

Identifying What Customers Value   What do your customers want?  It’s a simple one-word answer: value.  Volumes have been written about the topic and what it is that customers really want, but it does not need to be as mysterious as the lost city of Atlantis. No matter what type of business you have, be it a chain of boutiques, a family run

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BLUFing Your Communication at Work

managers resource handbook

  How to Present Information to Your Target Audience We’ve all experienced it.  We ask for an update and our employee who sits just three offices down writes you an email that takes you 20 minutes to read.  Assuming you read it.  One of the most difficult parts about being a manager is explaining the importance of audience to employees.  The concept of

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7 Business Development Tips for Small Businesses

managers resource handbook

Build Fundamentals Into Your Small Business I recently worked with a small company to assist with their business development struggles.  The company employed about 20 employees and resided in the IT services industry.  The CEO described his company’s situation as “able to perform well when we can actually get in the door.”  Over the course of interviews and the evaluation of the business,

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