What does your customer/boss want you to include in today’s proposal?

18th September 2018

Q: What does your customer/boss want you to include in today’s proposal?

A: I’ve no idea. Ask them.

The best way to produce a communication that someone wants…

…Is to ask them what they want in it. So…

  • What headings do they want in there? Ask them
  • How long do they want it to be? Ask them
  • Do they want a formal document, or an informal chat? Ask them

In fact, before you write anything, verbally agree as much as you can.

Doing this, then confirming in writing what you’ve verbally agreed, is much faster than hoping your document does the selling for you.

(If you don’t believe me, re-read the tedious Email Tennis game you played with a colleague recently).

Imagine if, every time you wrote a proposal, you’d already verbally agreed the solution, deliverables, £value it’d deliver, your price, the proposal headings and style… well, your document is now a confirmation; not an exploration.

And that’s much more likely to work.

Action Point

For the next communication you’re preparing for someone, verbally agree as much as you can upfront.

And if you’re currently in the middle of writing one – and it’s taking miles too long – go back to them and agree things verbally. You’ll save you both a lot of time if you do.

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