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Measuring Success: What Is Your Goal?

Oct 31, 2018

We all measure success differently.  In the procurement world, success for most is measured by wins.  That is, how many bids have you won.  However, for others it is not about the number of wins, but the size of the contract, dollar value.  Too many vendors only go after the big dollar contracts and continuously fail, whereas, others measure wins by the number of victories, those smaller contracts that can grow and multiply.  Neither of these approaches is wrong, however, they call for a different strategy and preparation.

Let’s use the example of climbing a mountain.  For many, the pinnacle of mountain climbing is reaching the summit of Mount Everest, the world’s tallest peak, for others it is Mount Wycheproof, registered as the world’s smallest mountain. To reach the summit of Mount Everest, one needs to prepare for years by training on smaller peaks and getting their body in the right physical condition.  Along with the physical demands, the equipment needed to summit Mount Everest can cost thousands of dollars.  Once you reach the base of Everest you need to spend months getting climatized and starting the climb up to the peak.  The total cost to climb Everest is estimated to be as high as $100,000.  It can take up to two months to reach the summit.  The goal is to reach the summit, and some are prepared to put that much time and effort into reaching their goal even if they fail many times in the attempt.

On the other hand, there is Mount Wycheproof.  For those who do not want to take on the rigor and expense of climbing Everest, this is their goal.  Compared to Everest, at 29,035 feet, Wycheproof stands a mighty 486 feet.  The most interesting fact is that more people have tried to scale Mount Everest and failed than have reached the summit of Mount Wycheproof.  Why would that be?  Mount Wycheproof would obviously be the easier to summit.  The answer:  Your goal.

Remember, most vendors want to go after the big state government contracts, they do not see the satisfaction or glory of winning a small contract.  However, if this is your first time bidding you need to develop realistic qualifications and goals for yourself, like climbing to the summit of Wycheproof five times.  It takes time, experience, and resources to win the big contracts. Some companies see the value in first bidding on smaller contracts and overtime gain the tools and resources to move onto the larger contracts. Sometimes the small win, or reaching the peak of Mount Wycheproof, can be as rewarding as reaching the summit of Everest.  For some it takes many failed trips to reach the summit of Everest and for others there is great satisfaction in reaching the summit of smaller mountains the first time.

Michigan Legislative Consultants is a bipartisan lobbying firm based in Lansing, Michigan. Our team of lobbyists and procurement specialists provide a wide range of services for some of the most respected companies in America. For more on MLC, visit www.mlcmi.com or connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.