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  • Writer's pictureIdeas at Dawn

5 Tips for Creating a Winning Proposal Plan and Schedule

The start-up phase of an proposal can often feel like a high-stakes puzzle, where each piece intricately fits within a complex structure. This is the time when a proposal is on the horizon, or we're locked into the labyrinth of a draft RFP. It's time to stretch, crack the knuckles, and put on our game faces - ready to win that project!


One of the first steps that I suggest you take is to schedule all essential milestones for your proposal from the get-go. This isn't just a matter of penciling dates into a calendar and hoping for the best. It requires a degree of foresight and strategy. Here's what you'll need to consider:

1. Double-Booking Your Milestones: a No-No

Be aware of potential conflicts such as overlapping reviews with milestones. Address this possible hitch early in the process and, like a game of 'telephone,' make sure this information makes its way through your team like lightning.

2. Time-off Awareness: An Essential

Pencil it in, stick a Post-it, or use a fancy scheduling app - however, you prefer to keep track, be informed about any planned leave in your team helping on the proposal. No one wants to discover at the last minute that the person needed for a critical task is off basking on a beach somewhere.

3. Shifts in Schedules: Keep it Transparent

If a proposal milestone or review date decides to pull a fast one and change, this information needs to ripple out to everyone. Fun fact: A successful AEC project milestone is like an elusive chameleon - constantly adapting to its surroundings.

4. Adjusting to Time Estimate or Pricing Hiccups

If the sand is trickling out quicker than anticipated, the answer is naturally to just add more sand, right? Well, not exactly. But if estimates or pricing efforts are taking longer than scheduled, it's upon us to shift the timeline with a good dose of teamwork and maybe just a tad bit of that miraculous unknown you hear so much about - 'added time'.

5. Health Check for Your Systems

Finally, if you haven't done so already, take the time to double-check your systems and processes. Think of this as a wellness check. It never hurts to ensure everything's in tip-top shape and ready to perform.

These steps give you a strong start on your journey to come. Getting it right from day one sets the tone for a successful "game on" spirit for all stages to follow. At Ideas at Dawn, we understand AEC professionals, and we are here to ensure you're set up for success - just consider us your trusted sidekick during your professional journey. Here's to facing the opportunities and challenges ahead like a pro!

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