Monday, April 16, 2012

In Austin? Sign up for my business proposals seminar.

On June 8, I'll be teaching a daylong seminar on writing persuasive business proposals. This seminar will involve learning a lot, but I'll also be deploying my trademark humor. You probably won't want to leave at the end of it.

Here's the description:

How do business proposals work, and how can they work better?
In this seminar, attendees will examine business proposals as persuasive arguments: they will take these proposals apart, examine their underlying components, and learn how to put them back together in ways that make them more effective. Using a proven methodology for developing these types of documents, attendees will generate basic proposal arguments to address a case study. This case study will allow students, working in small groups, to identify the problem presented in the case study; generate components of the proposal; analyze stakeholder dynamics; tie these complex elements together into a coherent, easily comprehensible argument; and outline a proposal based on this groundwork. Finally, the class will workshop applications to actual cases that attendees bring in.
After this seminar, attendees will be able to:
  • Understand basic proposal structure and logic.
  • Identify basic proposal sections and understand how they work together.
  • Clarify and identify objectives.
  • Develop a methodology for reaching the objective.
  • Perform audience analysis by identifying stakeholders, investigating their concerns, and weighting criteria accordingly.
  • Connect your team’s qualifications with the specific requirements implied in the situation and methodology.
  • Develop structured benefits that address the situation.
  • Tie these complex elements into a coherent argument.
  • Learn how to rework an ill-defined problem into an effective proposal.
  • Pour all this information into a basic proposal format.

The proposal-writing methodology used in this seminar was developed for large consulting agencies, but it can also apply to other sorts of proposals and reports in a variety of organizations.

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