In part 1, we talked about the preparation we put into putting together a service quote for a potential new client. That is always an interesting time because we get to perhaps learn about a new industry or it might be interesting because it is in a different city and we get to learn about new approaches to an event. Learning new practices makes us better overall as this accumulating knowledge is part of the sharing we thrive on to better our best practices.
Three things can happen in phase 2 – we win the contract on the first at bat, we lose the opportunity, or we get asked more qualifying questions. If we win in the first phase, that is great. It means we got to know them enough to offer our products and services better than the competition and we get to really get into the event as a partner to ensure we contribute to their success.
If we lose the opportunity, we will ask for where we missed the mark. Losing a chance to win a new contract happens. You can’t win them all, but you sure can learn from them all. Maybe the incumbent has been there for 15 years and they are ok. Maybe we didn’t understand the pricing targets. Maybe they thought we were too small or too big. Be graceful in your loss. Wish them well and let them know perhaps next time, we can help them out. Nothing lasts forever – good or bad.
If we get more qualifying questions, then we are still in the running. We answer the questions they have and look to add our own into the conversation. Is there something we can add to bring more value to either the management team or directly to the exhibitors. At the end of the day, we are all in this to be profitable and ensure the service benchmarks are attained or exceeded.
As the saying goes, either you win or you learn. It’s that simple. It’s that easy. In Part 3, we will look at how we start the planning upon a successful proposal phase.