For those of you who have been involved in bids, it can be a crazy, intense roller coaster ride from EOI to RFT submission. But here is the 4 main things it has taught me that i have carried through to my other jobs…
- How good you are at the start of something is never a good indicator of what you could become – When I started my new role as a Bid Manager I found it very challenging and new, and at one point I was so dejected because I simply felt like I couldn’t do anything right and I would never be good at this job… But I also remembered that I have felt like this nearly every time I have started something new. EVERY. TIME. Everyone needs time to adjust, to learn, and to fail. And most importantly I needed to give myself that time. Just because you don’t get it right now, doesn’t mean you won’t.
- Communication is key – I learnt that if I do not communicate to the team the expectations or tasks, then I can’t be disappointed if they don’t meet it. I’ve learnt that as a bid manager you can’t ever assume that your team know exactly what you want and expect. They are not mind readers, nor should they have to be. It’s up to me to make sure they have clear tasks, expectations, and deliverables so they can achieve success.
- Instead of looking for the right answer, try to find the right question. – I have learnt that the best and most successful people don’t necessarily try to know all the answers…but they do know the right questions. I have realised that the value lies in the question, and more importantly, in the 2nd question… ‘Why?’. You don’t have to know all the answers, but by asking the right questions you can help others find the answers for themselves.
- Our role as leaders is to provide the environments to let people & projects flourish, not fix it after it fails – When it comes to bids there is no excuses if you get to the end and you fail to deliver. There is no chance to re-do. And in general I’ve learnt that you should never take that approach anyway. I have discovered that if you need to talk to people about the reason they are failing after they actually fail, you’ve missed the boat. You should talk to people all the time. As a leader, you need to be able to know what your team needs (all the time) and how you can help create the environment to ensure their success.
Who else has worked in Bids? What tips/lessons that you learnt would you share?