We just received word from the client that they are going a different route than us for their consultants. I requested more feedback. But here are my thoughts on maybe why we lost (I am not used to losing):
- The client was somewhat disorganized/disjointed. He would say one thing, then do another or not respond for a week or two. But that said, someone one there are things we probably could have done better in our control. Here are some questions…
- Was there another relationship with the Board? THey are funded by several wealthy investors – there is a decent chance one of them ahs a friend with a company that got the business. Or perhaps they were given a short list of long-time suppliers they should give priority to. Again, the client is a good advocate for his tool but was not a great communicator.
- We missed a meeting early on. One of our key meetings, and the only meeting with his team, our Principal had to cancel last minute (it happens) due to an existing client issue. I attended, took detailed notes, and it doesn’t seem like that had a lasting impact, but it may.
- Price. We are not cheap by any standard, and they are a nonprofit and he has made a point of saying several times how he used otehr suppliers because they gave him stuff (software, etc.) for free as a tax write off or charitable donation. We didn’t have that kind of cash/resources.
- Delayed SOW. It took us a week to send over an SOW, and it was an SOW and not a deatiled proposal. I rectived that by providing a detailed documetn of why we were qualified later, but next time I’d liketo tie this in and do it in person.
- After the meetings, we weren’t certain what consultant they needed. Maybe a detailed discovery meeting to help, but then again we did reach out to the client and ask to talk to his team but he wasn’t respobnsive and/or communicative.
At the end of the day, he was not a great communicator and that made this a challenge. But we could have done more to steer it. This was my first opp with a highly experienced project team, so have a better idea of how to steer them next time. I will chalk this up to a first date learning curve with a new supplier, as well on some level my after-effects to illness, when I am not quite as insanely driven and forceful internally as I used to be. I remember just five hyears ago telling a manager I was going to kill someone (literally used that word, though I didn’t mean it literally and my manager knew that if I didn’t get my proposal aSAP.