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Published: Jun 10 , 2019
Author: Brian Buck

We recently received a ten-page RFP document. Of that entire document, 92 words were devoted to the scope of the project, while 2,535 were committed to the RFP’s rules of engagement! This is but one example of the misuse of an RFP. Many buying organizations don’t realize that if you use the RFP process incorrectly, you will not arrive at a solution that meets your needs, the process will take longer to complete, and you will more than likely overpay! In other words, all of the things that the RFP process is supposed to prevent. Here are some ways that buyers are misusing RFPs and what can be done about it.

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Published: Apr 27 , 2017
Author: Stephen White

In her most recent movie The Last Word Shirley McLaine plays a crabby old rich-woman control freak, founder of a successful advertising agency in her early years, now contemplating her demise. She commissions her own obituary needing to know what it will look like. But she has been a crabby control freak all her life; from her ex-husband to her estranged daughter and her scarred work colleagues and ‘friends’ no-one has a good word to say about her. So with the help of the obituary writer she embarks on a project to redeem her reputation with those who dislike her so much...

Published: Oct 05 , 2012
Author: Stephen White

One of the most commented upon blogs we have posted this year is the one we published on the frustration many suppliers feel when they are in receipt of client RFPs. Comments came from suppliers in agreement of the sentiment and many buyers about the bias in the writing....

Published: May 04 , 2012
Author: Stephen White

Last week two RFPs arrived from international companies looking for our proposals and prices for training courses. Both made me mad as hell. If I had my way there would have been an Act of Parliament banning RFPs for anything more complicated than the purchase of paperclips. Corporations looking for the best creative ideas, because they have a negotiating problem or a need which requires the development of training or coaching, do themselves no favours by making potential suppliers go through the mechanical hoops demanded by an RFP. It is undoubtedly not best practice.

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Delegation of Value

I asked my teenage daughter, the artist, “If you were offered a well-paid commission to paint a mural, but under the condition that you had to get every brushstroke approved before you applied it, would you take the job?” She laughed and said, “That’s not how creativity works. Besides, if you’re hired to do a job, you should be allowed to do the job.” Then she told me I was weird. Weird or not, she’s right — creativity does not work that way, and we should let people do the jobs they were hired to do. But every day at the dealmaking table, we kill creativity and value creation by how we constrain our negotiators. You want to improve your bottom line? Let your dealmakers do their job. Here’s how. . .

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