Has one of your training proposals ever been rejected? You were so sure it would be successful but your competition won (It hurts, doesn’t it?)
I know what that’s like. You and your team have put your heart and soul into crafting a carefully considered training proposal.
It was polished and professional. The document was slick and attractive. You even had someone else cast their eyes over it…but to no avail.
Today, we’re going to give you 10 questions to ask yourself so that you can increase your chances of landing the next contract. Sound good?
Ask for feedback
Okay. So you are feeling a little rough. All that effort and not much to show for it. You feel like throwing that proposal in the bin and deleting all those emails with that prospective client.
You may even tell yourself. ‘Well, that’s the last time, I/we ever bother with that company again!!’
If you take it personally (It’s hard not to, right?), you’ll have learnt nothing. And that would be a pity.
‘But, where did we go wrong?”
The simple answer is that you can’t know and won’t know for sure until you ask for feedback from the very person (or people) who have rejected your training proposal.
Your ex-prospect should feel that you are looking for information not justification. They don’t want to feel like they have to explain themselves to you.
Instead, you need them to want to help you get it right next time.
“Hi, Sharon. We are so sorry not to have won your confidence this time, but we know you have made the right decision for your business.”
“May I have 10 mins with you on Tuesday just to get a few pointers so I can learn how we can improve our chances with our next client. I would be very grateful”
Such valued insight such could make all the difference between the next proposal falling flat or hitting the target.
How much would this be worth to you?
Understand the brief
When you first read the prospects ‘RFP’ (Request for Proposal), you perhaps thought that you had this is in the bag.
It appeared to be straightforward.
Provide this information. Answer a couple of questions. Attach a few testimonials and a link or two to a case-study. Round up the price a little. Pop in a graph and some logos.
“There! That should do the trick….”
The fact is that winning training proposals take more than telling your story.
It is more a question of understanding the prospect’s story.
Where are they going? Where do they want to end up? Where are they on the journey? What is stopping them from achieving this objective? What have they already tried and how did that go?
What exactly are they looking for?
Did you provide compelling answers to the questions being asked and do feel that you understood the brief?
Were you guilty of ‘re-purposing’ an old proposal and re-hashing it in the hope that it work a second or a third-time?
WIth a second pair of eyes, you might establish that you are telling your story, rather than explaining how you fit in with your prospect’s story.
As Stephen R. Covey wrote: ‘Seek first to understand, then, to be understood.’
You’re going to do much better next time!
Biggest takeaways you don’t want to miss:
- Why you should be clear on you criteria for qualifying prospects
- What ‘unfair advantage’ means and why you need one
- What happens when you find yourself in a ‘beauty parade’
- What you can do to establish value in the minds of your prospect
- Why your chances of winning are either realistic or not
- Why charging 10% of the value you deliver makes sense