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Proposal Development Secrets: Win More, Work Smarter, and Get Home on Time. Paperback – February 9, 2012
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"What is most enjoyable about Handal's writing is its balance of seriously useful information and wickedly irreverent observations. Overall, the information provided is easily accessible and instantly usable. You will be able to start acting on what you've read immediately, without anyone's approval. Best of all, you might even get to enjoy those extra hours of daylight savings time with family and friends this summer!"
- Society of Marketing Professional Services, Marketer (August 2012)
"Handal's book is good - in fact it is excellent."
- Construction Marketing Ideas.com
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Actually, that's part of the value of it in my opinion. I stay pretty busy, therefore, I sometimes spend a long time finishing a book. This one, I read on the way home from an out-of-town meeting. It had a lot of great info, in which, to both read and spend some time pondering on it took about two hours.
It wasn't a "how-to" book and that's not really what I wanted anyway. I wanted some real insight about various situations from someone who had experience and then compare and contrast it to my own situations over the years (e.g. corporate vs. government clients), and then think about areas I could tweak in the proposal development stage to increase my company's overall profit when all is said and done (e.g. maybe not rely on the "inside connection" so much). That's what it was and I believe it was presented by Mr. Handal in a straightforward and witty way, and almost like we were having a chat over a beer.
I thoroughly enjoyed the section about myths debunked, especially about relationships and inside connections. I have my own myth to debunk; even if the quality is so-so, if it's free it must be good value. Well, I did happen to get the ebook free with a promo deal, however, it just simply isn't true that just because something is free it must be good value. I've lost count of the times someone has offered a free pdf of something only for me to later realize how incredible a waste of my time it was.
My time is valuable and this was good value. I would have easily paid the current $6.89.
Well worth the money, whether you are doing a one off RFP or have to generate dozens of proposals each year. I recommend you use the book as part of your check-list the next time you respond to RFPs. A bargain, indeed, if an e-book costing less than $5.00 can help your business/practice secure a project worth $500,000 or $5 million. Maybe the only thing I can say that would cause me to remove a (marketing, not content) star is the price -- this book is priced way too low, in my opinion.
It was nice to feel validated about the tricks/philosphies those of us in proposal land know are true. For example, why are we submitting if we've never performed this kind of work; Three Card Monte is a tried and true proposal evaluation process; and most important marketers create a proposal schedule for a reason - it really does matter.
This quick, entertaining read should be given to everyone who touches a proposal in the professional service industries.