Seven Truths of Federal Contracting

Audio file Seven Truths of Federal Contracting.mp4 Transcript 00:00:00 Speaker 1 In this video you will learn the seven truthsof federal contracting with Eileen Kent. 00:00:09 Speaker 2 The seven truths about federal contracting. 00:00:12 Speaker 2 Now we’re going to be talking to you about todayis something I’m in incredibly passionate about. 00:00:19 Speaker 2 I’ve been training and teachingpeople probably about 10. 00:00:24 Speaker 2 And over. 00:00:25 Speaker 2 The last 20 years I’ve. 00:00:27 Speaker 2 Walked the halls of federal. 00:00:28 Speaker 2 Buildings, agencies, the Pentagon. I’ve walkedin the halls of Atlanta and in Dallas and LA and San Francisco. 00:00:38 Speaker 2 I’ve helped well over 330 companies. 00:00:41 Speaker 2 With their federal sales action plans. 00:00:44 Speaker 2 When I really wanted to come here today because Iknow you had a lot of great speakers that talked. 00:00:51 Speaker 2 To you about how. 00:00:52 Speaker 2 To kind of pump up yourbusiness and get things going, and you’ve been hearing through the Grapevine.00:00:57 Speaker 2 Gee, the federal governmentopportunity is absolutely huge. 00:01:00 Speaker 2 Huge for woman owned businesses,disadvantaged businesses, minority owned businesses, Veterans,service, disabled, minority businesses. 00:01:11 Speaker 2 It’s right for those of youto capture opportunities. 00:01:15 Speaker 2 And I found in the. 00:01:18 Speaker 2 Last year or two. 00:01:19 Speaker 2 There’s a lot of new players. 00:01:21 Speaker 2 That have entered the market. 00:01:23 Speaker 2 And they’re putting out therea lot of material that talks about the billions and billions of dollars. 00:01:30 Speaker 2 That you could. 00:01:31 Speaker 2 Win overnight and I want to tell you. 00:01:33 Speaker 2 That the federal government. 00:01:35 Speaker 2 Wants to work with the best in thebusiness that offers products and services. 00:01:41 Speaker 2 At a really reasonable. 00:01:43 Speaker 2 8 and that’s going to take. 00:01:45 Speaker 2 Some time and energy on each. 00:01:47 Speaker 2 Of our parts to. 00:01:49 Speaker 2 Be able to go build our federal opportunities. 00:01:52 Speaker 2 So today I wanted to kind of cut throughsome of the things you might have been told in the marketplace and what isactually the truth in the marketplace.00:02:03 Speaker 2 From a federal. 00:02:04 Speaker 2 Woman owned business. 00:02:05 Speaker 2 Someone who’s walked the. 00:02:06 Speaker 2 Halls, just like you’re about to. 00:02:08 Speaker 2 Embark upon maybe some of youhave already done some of this. 00:02:12 Speaker 2 So, we’re going to cover theseven truths and my heart. 00:02:16 Speaker 2 This is my. 00:02:17 Speaker 2 Heart to you. 00:02:18 Speaker 2 And I’m hoping to leave some extra room inthe end, because if I ruffle any feathers or I challenge you on what you’re thinking, ormaybe you experience the complete opposite, I’m hoping that you share your experience. 00:02:32 Speaker 2 Or ask a. 00:02:32 Speaker 2 Question that might be directed towardwhat I’m going to be talking about today, so I invite you to be interactive with mebecause I think today is about empowerment.00:02:44 Speaker 2 And passion and caring and doing the right thing. 00:02:49 Speaker 2 And these seven truths to meis about telling my sisters and all my friends selling to the Fedswhat’s really happening in the marketplace. 00:02:58 Speaker 2 So the first thing I just would like to say is. 00:03:02 Speaker 2 It’s going. 00:03:03 Speaker 2 To be a bumpy ride. 00:03:05 Speaker 2 Selling to the federal government is noteasy and they made it not easy for a reason. 00:03:13 Speaker 2 Can you imagine being someonein a role inside the government that needs to provide or present a product orservice to the taxpayer and they need help? 00:03:24 Speaker 2 They need help from a company.00:03:25 Speaker 2 Like ours, right? And maybe theythey have a budget of $1,000,000? Well they’re not going to justhand $1,000,000 to just anyone. 00:03:33 Speaker 2 They need to show in their file thatthis company not only is qualified, they’re proven to be qualified. 00:03:40 Speaker 2 They’ve been well recommended. 00:03:42 Speaker 2 They have experiences and certifications andclearances to do the work that they’re handing this $1,000,000 over to, and so that when thatvendor does a really good job, it reflects.00:03:53 Speaker 2 Positively I’m 00:03:54 Speaker 2 Them so they’re going to make this jump hoops togive us our first contract, so I’m hoping some of you that have been there done that fora while is looking around their own going. 00:04:04 Speaker 2 Yep, that’s right. 00:04:05 Speaker 2 I had to earn my. 00:04:06 Speaker 2 Place so today I’m going to cover some. 00:04:10 Speaker 2 Of those realities, but first reality, which is. 00:04:14 Speaker 2 Probably the one when I heard itfor the first time, see when I was asked to sell to the federal governmentat the company I was working for.00:04:23 Speaker 2 It was right after 9. 00:04:24 Speaker 2 11 I was helping a furniture rental company buildtheir federal book of business. We had just gotten our first contract vehicle and the owner said,Eileen, I want you to go on the Lewis and Clark expedition. You’re going to solve the fence, and Istarted traveling to LA San Francisco, San Diego. 00:04:45 Speaker 2 Dallas, Atlanta DC, Chicagothen back around again. 00:04:49 Speaker 2 7 out of eight weeks. 00:04:52 Speaker 2 I was on the road for a straight year. 00:04:56 Speaker 2 But I landed HomelandSecurity’s very first offices.00:05:01 Speaker 2 OK, it took. 00:05:02 Speaker 2 Me a year. 00:05:02 Speaker 2 He was month 13 and I tooka class by a guru in DC. 00:05:07 Speaker 2 His name was Richard White. 00:05:08 Speaker 2 He owned a company called Fed Market and I went to one of his trainings whichwas doing business with Homeland Security. 00:05:14 Speaker 2 Nobody knew anything about. 00:05:15 Speaker 2 Homeland Security at the time, and there wasjust like a room like you’re in about 150 people and he was in the front sayingit’s going to take you guys a year and I had a heart attack because I just tookthis position and I was living off Commission. 00:05:32 Speaker 2 And I said, Oh my God, I’m not. 00:05:33 Speaker 2 Gonna be able. 00:05:33 Speaker 2 To live for a year if Idon’t get business right away and we’re able to deliver in two business days. 00:05:38 Speaker 2 I’m used to closing deals quickly. 00:05:41 Speaker 2 And you know what? 00:05:42 Speaker 2 It was true.00:05:44 Speaker 2 Took me a year. 00:05:45 Speaker 2 Of sheer cold calling, reaching out topeople asking around being referred. 00:05:52 Speaker 2 And pushing, pushing, pushing. 00:05:54 Speaker 2 And getting my name out there, doing proposals,walking halls, designs, writing proposals. 00:06:01 Speaker 2 It took me a year walking the. 00:06:03 Speaker 2 And when someone tells you in this marketplace that it takes days to do businesswith the federal government, well. 00:06:11 Speaker 2 I’ll tell you. 00:06:12 Speaker 2 It takes days 365 to 741 to two years toget your first strong decent contract now. 00:06:23 If you’re. 00:06:24 Speaker 2 A company that sells products,let’s say for example you sell ice and you’re in the Southeast region. 00:06:29 Speaker 2 Well, eventually there’s going tobe a hurricane and famous going to come in and set up an office and need some ice. 00:06:35 Speaker 2 So if they need ice from youand you’re a local vendor, you might be able to sell some ice to them in. 00:06:42 Speaker 2 Days so in a situation where there’s an emergency or urgency, or you got lucky and someone calledyou because they needed a particular component and you are the only vendorwho carries it, you got lucky.00:06:56 Speaker 2 It’s like being the first one in Vegas ever go. 00:06:58 Speaker 2 To Vegas and you throw your money down on. 00:07:00 Speaker 2 The table the 1st. 00:07:01 Speaker 2 Time you did it, you probably want to. 00:07:03 Speaker 2 Little bit. 00:07:04 Speaker 2 You know it’s beginners luck whenyou actually win a couple of deals, but I’m talking long term strong bigcontracts I’m talking about in the IT world. 00:07:15 Speaker 2 If you’re selling. 00:07:16 Speaker 2 Services it’s going to take you a yearor two to establish yourself as a company that they’re going to trust. 00:07:23 Speaker 2 And also, you’re going to have tounseat that incumbent, so if they’ve already signed a contract with an incumbent,they’re kind of married to them for a while.00:07:33 Speaker 2 So you have to talk to them and get them to talk to you and meet with you quietly underthe radar while they’re working with the. 00:07:41 Speaker 2 Prime and they. 00:07:42 Speaker 2 Share with you why they’re not happy. 00:07:44 Speaker 2 And when a new opportunitycomes up, they might give. 00:07:47 Speaker 2 You a shot at it. 00:07:48 Speaker 2 So they might have to divorcethe other vendor before. 00:07:52 Speaker 2 They work with you. 00:07:53 Speaker 2 If you’re in services. 00:07:54 Speaker 2 So in this business you needto prepare yourself your heart and your team for this to take at leasta year or two to go after this business. 00:08:04 Speaker 2 And by the way, if anybodytells you that they guarantee. 00:08:08 Speaker 2 You a certain amount of business. 00:08:09 Speaker 2 This nobody can do that. 00:08:12 Speaker 2 No one can guarantee what that federal customeris going to do, whether or not they’re going to choose you again, I’m, I’m leaning onsome of my experienced in the room look. 00:08:24 Speaker 2 Around the room and. 00:08:25 Speaker 2 Experience people you tell you. 00:08:27 Speaker 2 Tell your people sitting next to you. 00:08:30 Speaker 2 There’s no guarantees in this business, evenif a customer tells you that you’re going to be the vendor that they want, something mighthappen where the buyer chooses someone else, or there might be a box that wasn’tchecked, or a T that wasn’t cost. No one can guarantee 12 to24 months, no guarantees.00:08:49 Speaker 2 A lot of people say to me because I’ve. 00:08:51 Speaker 2 Been selling to. 00:08:52 Speaker 2 The feds, for quite a while in manydifferent areas in many different angles, and I build federal sales action plansfor companies that go after the agencies and some people say how much timeshould I spend actually placing calls? 00:09:07 Speaker 2 Sending emails. 00:09:09 Speaker 2 Getting on LinkedIn, performingcapabilities, briefings, and I’m going to give you whatmy average amount of time is. 00:09:16 Speaker 2 It’s going to take 50 to 60 solid sellinghours to get your first 10 to 20 appointments. 00:09:27 Speaker 2 Not even the guaranteed. 00:09:30 Speaker 2 Deal I’m talking the ability totalk to the small business officer who might introduce you to the project teamand then you can do a capabilities briefing.00:09:40 Speaker 2 But you need someone up against it making calls 50 to 60 hours before you can evenbreakthrough getting some decent appointments. 00:09:50 Speaker 2 So if you spend 2 hours a week,it’s going to take six months. 00:09:54 Speaker 2 If you spend 10 hours a week,it’s going to take six weeks. 00:09:58 Speaker 2 To get solid appointments whichmight shake out an opportunity which might come out in the next six months. 00:10:05 Speaker 2 So that’s why I say if you’re going togo after this business and you’re a. 00:10:10 Speaker 2 Sole owner of. 00:10:11 Speaker 2 Your company trying to sellto the federal government. 00:10:14 Speaker 2 You might want to rethink that a littlebit because you might need to hire A. 00:10:18 Speaker 2 Full time salesperson, or at leastdelegate that the percent of your time selling not writing proposals,selling making sales cost. 00:10:29 Speaker 2 The other thing I want to share with youbecause I’ve been looking at the data, the actual I do data dips in the contractsthat are out there for my clients and I’m able to see how many actual bidsthey’re receiving on these opportunities and you can see their $1,000,000opportunities, 100 grand $10,000.50.00:10:49 Speaker 2 $1000, fifty $1,000,000 and theaverage number of bids that they get 3. 00:10:55 Speaker 2 Three bids, that’s it. So if you’re watchingpublic bid sites like and other. 00:11:03 Speaker 2 Many times those bids are going to get a lotof bids, but once those bids are awarded, or those contract vehicles are awarded, onlythose couple of vendors have to bid on some tasks or they do modifications or extensions,or they exercise options so. 00:11:21 Speaker 3 It’s one to. 00:11:22 Speaker 2 Three bids that I see in the data. 00:11:23 Speaker 2 Which tells me it’s a relationship sale, sothere are different ways that they can buy. 00:11:28 Speaker 2 From you they. 00:11:29 Speaker 2 Can do a sole source with you. 00:11:31 Speaker 2 Which means they can. 00:11:32 Speaker 2 Award you a direct contact. 00:11:34 Speaker 2 In fact, if it’s under $10,000,there’s something called the micro purchase threshold they can buyfrom anybody 10,000 or below. 00:11:44 Speaker 2 Now that used to be. 00:11:45 Speaker 2 2500 and it. 00:11:46 Speaker 2 Used to be 33. 00:11:48 Speaker 2 1000 but once Amazon entered the market,remember, 2019 they announced that in DC they’re. 00:11:54 Speaker 2 Putting that second headquarters smart, Amazonis going straight after government business. 00:12:00 Speaker 2 And they were able to find away to lobby the government to raise that micro purchase threshold to 10 grand.00:12:06 Speaker 2 They can still source up to 10 grand. Now there’s another little number you need toknow which is 250,000. It’s called simplified acquisitions and without any contract inplace they can get three open market bids. 00:12:20 Speaker 2 And be able to award up to $250,000 that usedto be 150,000. They raised it to 250,000 in 29. 00:12:29 Speaker 2 18 But then, there are otherways that they can do business. 00:12:33 Speaker 2 There’s contract vehicles outthere, like the GSA schedule. 00:12:37 Speaker 2 The GSA schedule is a negotiated contractwith the federal government on your prices. 00:12:43 Speaker 2 OK, and if you have services with yourhourly rates and you have an opportunity, all they need to get. 00:12:50 Speaker 2 Are three written bids from 3 similar companies. 00:12:54 Speaker 2 To award a contract. 00:12:57 Speaker 2 And that could be 14 days as quick as 14 daysif it’s a product they can immediately click and buy from the GSA website up to $25,000without competition, but they tend to like to get three bids anyway for the files, but youdon’t see a lot of bids that have fifty 100.00:13:17 Speaker 2 Contracts or bids received. 00:13:19 Speaker 2 One to three. 00:13:21 Speaker 2 Is is the average. 00:13:24 Speaker 2 The next true. 00:13:25 Speaker 2 Bids are written. 00:13:27 Speaker 2 I want you to hold this one in your heart. 00:13:29 Speaker 2 Bids are written. 00:13:31 Speaker 2 With someone in mind, that’spainful to hear, but it’s the truth. 00:13:37 Speaker 2 Someone was there six months to a yearbefore creating that list of needs. 00:13:43 Speaker 2 Designing that new website,showing them capabilities. 00:13:48 Speaker 2 Maybe a vendor who was alreadythere for the last five years. 00:13:53 Speaker 2 Maybe they’re courting another vendor andthey want to unseat the current vendor, but they’ve been talking tosomeone, so every time you see. 00:14:02 Speaker 2 A public bid what? 00:14:03 Speaker 2 I want you to do is dive into thepast performance requirements.00:14:10 Speaker 2 Read the past performance requirementsand if they say something like. 00:14:14 Speaker 2 You must present similar size and scope pastperformance in the last two years at this agency. 00:14:22 Speaker 2 At this location, they’re planningto give that to the incumbent. 00:14:28 Speaker 2 Ouch, take a look at the names of thedocuments that are attachments on. 00:14:36 Speaker 2 The bids that are there. 00:14:37 Speaker 2 Recently I was looking at a.00:14:39 Speaker 2 Post under and it was for one of myclients and we we pulled out the solicitation. 00:14:46 Speaker 2 And we started. 00:14:46 Speaker 2 To look at the attachments on what the needs. 00:14:49 Speaker 2 Were and they named one of theattachments, the incumbent name. 00:14:56 Speaker 2 It happens. 00:14:58 Speaker 2 Assume they have someone in mind. 00:15:01 Speaker 2 If you haven’t been already in there,the reason why I want you to know this is so that you stop writing blind bids all daylong that they’ve already have someone in mind. 00:15:13 Speaker 2 Why would you spend all this timeand energy writing a competitive? 00:15:17 Speaker 2 Bid when you think it’s perfect for us. 00:15:19 Speaker 2 When somebody else alreadywrote those specs when I. 00:15:22 Speaker 2 Was in the furniture industry. 00:15:23 Speaker 2 For example, if they had alreadya list of furniture on there, I could tell by the description of thefurniture, which vendor they plan to use. 00:15:33 Speaker 2 That’s how good you have to be about lookingfor the towels in the solicitation itself. 00:15:40 Speaker 2 Also, there’s something that you cando at that they have.They have current contracts. I’msorry. Current contract data. 00:15:48 So you can. 00:15:49 Speaker 2 Even look at those keywords in the contract data and see who’s been doing thatkind of work at that agency. 00:15:55 Speaker 2 And you can predict the current incumbent. 00:15:58 Speaker 2 Now, why would you want to do that as a small? 00:16:01 Speaker 2 Woman owned business, maybe Minority 8A hubzone. 00:16:05 Speaker 2 Service disabled that maybe you can approachthe income and then say hey you want to partner. 00:16:10 Speaker 2 On that. 00:16:11 Speaker 2 So it it really makes sense to do. 00:16:13 Speaker 2 Your homework before. 00:16:15 Speaker 2 You write it, but they have awinner in mind. Now this little piece of advice, truth #5 is for the incumbents. 00:16:24 Speaker 2 Don’t assume that bad boy is yoursbecause they might be courting two or three other vendors ’causethey want to hedge their bets. 00:16:33 Speaker 2 Maybe they’re kind of sick of. 00:16:34 Speaker 2 You and they want. 00:16:35 Speaker 2 To get rid of you. 00:16:37 Speaker 2 That’s my hope when we’re tryingto go in and get it right, but. 00:16:41 Speaker 2 They’re going to be talking to other vendors.00:16:43 Speaker 2 When that bid comes up tosee who else is out there. 00:16:47 Speaker 2 I’m not just talking about market research, they brought someone in, toldthem what the situation was. 00:16:53 Speaker 2 Maybe that they want to unseat the incumbent and to give them some pointers on some areaswhere they’re looking for expertise or. 00:17:02 Speaker 2 Problem solving or a solution when I wasgoing after Homeland Security when I was first selling to the feds, I was going up against thelargest competitor, the Kleenex of our industry.00:17:15 Speaker 2 The name brand. 00:17:16 Speaker 2 In fact, the name Brand had just delivered. 00:17:20 Speaker 2 To TSA 400 orders, and now I was up against them trying todo the headquarters of Homeland Security. 00:17:28 Speaker 2 What happened is TSA, the customer was not happywith the current vendor and they walked me into the headquarters of Homeland and said work withEileen and the people at Homeland Security. 00:17:41 Speaker 2 I said, do you have any pastperformance at that time? 00:17:44 Speaker 2 I did it and I said I don’t. 00:17:48 Speaker 2 But I did help Boeing move from Seattle toChicago and they said OK when the bid came out. 00:17:55 Speaker 2 I looked at the past performance and it said you must have past performancewith the federal government. 00:18:02 Speaker 2 Or similar size. 00:18:04 Speaker 2 And scope with the namebrand Prime that was my in. 00:18:09 Speaker 2 They cracked open the door for meand I was able to come in with my past performance that was commercial andsteal that business from the incumbent.00:18:19 Speaker 2 Because they knew about me and they openedup that gate just enough for me to slip in. 00:18:27 Speaker 2 So incumbents watch out. 00:18:29 Speaker 2 They are meeting. 00:18:31 Speaker 2 With two or three. 00:18:32 Speaker 2 Others to hedge their bets if they either wantto unseat you, or at least consider your pricing. 00:18:40 Speaker 2 Truth #6 this is 1. 00:18:42 Speaker 2 I hear all the. 00:18:43 Speaker 2 Time the government is the largest customer. 00:18:48 Speaker 2 No, it’s not. 00:18:49 Speaker 2 The government is not one customer. 00:18:53 Speaker 2 When you talk to a contracting officer and theysay something like, well, you know the government. 00:18:59 Speaker 2 Blah blah blah. 00:18:59 Speaker 2 Blah blah no no. 00:19:01 Speaker 2 No change that too I. 00:19:04 Speaker 2 People use that for weight to get you to come in. 00:19:08 Speaker 2 The government isn’t one customer. 00:19:10 Speaker 2 The government is made up of at leasttwo to three million federal employees, dozens of departments, hundreds of of offices.00:19:22 Speaker 2 I mean thousands of locations. 00:19:24 Speaker 2 the VA alone, all the different hospitals, right? 00:19:27 Speaker 2 And there’s people inside thosehospitals that make decisions and make. 00:19:31 Speaker 2 It just says. 00:19:31 Speaker 2 So I look at the government as acategory of customers, not one customer, and you’re going to have to uncovernot only every regional office every local office, but the people inside thoseoffices who make decisions about what you do. 00:19:48 Speaker 2 So what I want to say to youfor this is you need to start. 00:19:51 Speaker 2 Considering micro focusing, yourefforts and the agencies that buy what you sell, the people within the agenciesthat buy with what you sell within the regions that you you’re located in Micro focus yourefforts because they’re not one customer. 00:20:05 He then. 00:20:11 Speaker 2 There are millions. 00:20:14 Speaker 2 And then truth #7 00:20:17 Speaker 2 Relationships matter.00:20:20 Speaker 2 Relationships are everything in this business. 00:20:23 Speaker 2 Writing a blind bid will notwin you the $1,000,000 contract. You might win a contract vehiclethat means an ID, IQ of some sort. 00:20:36 Speaker 3 Where you’re able to do. 00:20:37 Speaker 2 Business with that agency. 00:20:38 Speaker 2 But every. 00:20:39 Speaker 2 Single task the actual work. 00:20:42 Speaker 2 They need to know you before they hand. 00:20:45 Speaker 2 Work over to you. 00:20:46 Speaker 2 Because they’re going to get gradedon the quality of work that you do. 00:20:50 Speaker 2 So those relationships and building on is critically important, so I want tocover a little bonus material for you, because as you ask questions, it might fallback on this, so I’m going to talk a little bit.00:21:03 Speaker 2 A little bonus information thatI do in my federal sales game. 00:21:07 Speaker 2 How to play to win. 00:21:08 Speaker 2 I like to talk about. 00:21:09 Speaker 2 The players so you. 00:21:10 Speaker 2 Have people that are incontracting the contracting. 00:21:13 Speaker 2 Officer, the CEO or. 00:21:15 Speaker 2 KO, they’re nicknamed the KO when thecommanding officer on Base is the. 00:21:20 Speaker 2 Seal socio or Cal or the contracting specialist. 00:21:25 Speaker 2 They’re responsible for making surethat fair and open competition occurs, that they followed the Federalacquisition regulation to.00:21:33 Speaker 2 The letter and they’re. 00:21:34 Speaker 2 Able to show in the file that they invitedthe right vendors and if they didn’t, if they did it based on a sole source or a uniquesource that they’re able to justify why they. 00:21:45 Speaker 2 Sole sourced it only to one company. 00:21:47 Speaker 2 OK, so they’re all about making sure the rulesare followed, and then if they sole source. 00:21:53 Speaker 2 Or they provide a. 00:21:54 Speaker 2 Unique source they can justify why they did it. 00:21:57 Speaker 2 The contracting officer, the CEO or the KO has a warrant and this warrantis not a warrant for arrest. 00:22:05 Speaker 2 It’s a warrant that says how much money they’reable to spend on behalf of the federal government. 00:22:11 Speaker 2 So that’s the person who signs thecontract and awards the contract to you. 00:22:16 Speaker 2 Each and every one of these contractingofficers has protocols and procedures. 00:22:21 Speaker 2 They like to follow that’s specificto their location in their agency. 00:22:26 Speaker 2 It will come from the fire originally,but it will also come from experience past people that worked at their offices, the.00:22:33 Speaker 2 Training that they. 00:22:35 Speaker 2 That some contracting officersprefer to buy things one way. 00:22:39 Speaker 2 Maybe they, like GSA schedules while another contracting officer likesto use their internal ID. 00:22:45 Speaker 2 IQ’s some like to use set asides,others like to put it out on Sam. They all have their ways of doing business andwhy you want to have a relationship with them. 00:22:55 Speaker 2 Is to be able. 00:22:56 Speaker 2 To follow their protocol, learn be. 00:23:00 Speaker 2 A sponge understand the way that one contracting. 00:23:04 Speaker 2 Officer buys what you sell. 00:23:07 Speaker 2 Then there’s the small business officerthat’s located at your local business.00:23:12 Speaker 2 I bet there’s a couple in the room here, somaybe a couple of you can raise your hands. 00:23:16 Speaker 2 You might be a small business liaison for an agency, or you might be a smallbusiness liaison for a prime contractor. 00:23:23 Speaker 2 Their job is to be able to tell the SBA. 00:23:27 Speaker 2 That they’re performing a. 00:23:28 Speaker 2 Good faith effort. 00:23:29 Speaker 2 They’re doing their best. 00:23:31 Speaker 2 To introduce small businesses into theiragencies so they’re going to make sure that you’re filling out their paperwork thatyou’re properly registered in, which is the public website they’re going totake a look at what your capabilities are, and they’re going to determine whether or notwhat you do is needed at their at their.00:23:51 Speaker 2 Agency and hopefully using your ownresearch, you’ll be able to tell them, hey, I understand that these threevendors are working at your agency with these three contracting officerson these three contract vehicles. 00:24:05 Speaker 2 And they’re coming to an end soon, and. 00:24:06 Speaker 2 I want to meet a couple. 00:24:07 Speaker 2 People before it comes out again. 00:24:09 Speaker 2 So if you sit down with thosesmall business specialists and you kind of have already done yourhomework, it’s going to help them direct you in. 00:24:19 Speaker 2 Or you’re going to be able to go in and goafter the most important customer on this list. 00:24:24 Speaker 2 Who really is the person thatinfluences the by the end user? 00:24:29 Speaker 2 The end user can’t sign a contract and awardyou a contract, but they’re going to list every single one of thespecifications that they want.00:24:39 Speaker 2 And if you’re there early enough. 00:24:41 Speaker 2 And according to far 15.201they are encouraged to talk. 00:24:46 Speaker 2 To industry about innovation. 00:24:48 Speaker 2 So if you’re. 00:24:49 Speaker 2 Introducing them to new innovationsand they want to try you. 00:24:52 Speaker 2 They’re going to write down thespecifications of what they want, but then when they give it to thecontracting team, their hands are off of it. 00:25:01 Speaker 2 Until the bids come in and they’reon the evaluation committee. 00:25:05 Speaker 2 So that end user is pivotal. 00:25:07 Speaker 2 For you on whether or not. 00:25:09 Speaker 2 You’re going to get business at that agency. 00:25:12 Speaker 2 The stakeholder of the agency is usually thebase commander, the regional director, someone that isn’t necessarily part of the project,but they care about the mission of the agency. 00:25:25 Speaker 2 So they’re not going to be able topush you into their agency, it’s.00:25:29 Speaker 2 Not a top down. 00:25:30 Speaker 2 Sale it’s talking to end usersand getting to know them. 00:25:35 Speaker 2 So if you’re an engineering company, youneed to talk to the engineers at the agency. 00:25:39 Speaker 2 If you’re an IT company, you need to talk to program and projectmanagers that care about cyber security. 00:25:45 Speaker 2 If you’re a medical supplies person, you needto talk to the logistics teams at the at the VA. 00:25:51 Speaker 2 Those are the people that are going toreally push whether or not they want you and want to get rid of the incumbent,or they want to hedge their bets and give you a shot at one or twoopportunities coming down the pipe.00:26:04 Speaker 2 So I wanted to be able toleave this slide up here. 00:26:08 Speaker 2 As you ask. 00:26:09 Speaker 2 Questions, but the seven truth takesa year or more to get your big deal. 00:26:17 Speaker 2 50 to 60 hours. 00:26:20 Speaker 2 To get your first 10 to 15 conversationsthey already have a bidder in mind. 00:26:26 Speaker 2 The government isn’t one customer, it’s. 00:26:28 Speaker 2 A group of. 00:26:29 Speaker 2 Customers, they hedge theirbets and relationships matter, so now what I’d like to do is kind of throw itback to Tracy and anybody in the room who would like to now and I’m going to just not shareanymore and just bring up my my headshot here and I’m going to just closeout my share here and just.00:26:49 Speaker 3 Have a chat. 00:26:50 Speaker 2 With you so we have some time nowit’s we’ve got a solid 15 minutes to. 00:26:57 Speaker 2 Throw some questions my way. 00:27:05 Speaker 2 Let me see. 00:27:06 Speaker 2 Use one word to describe each quarter of the year as a federal contractor. For example,Q4 networking season. OK, so Q1 is. 00:27:22 Speaker 2 October 1st, which would be2020 to 2021 October 1st. 00:27:27 Speaker 2 And December 31st. That time is when they’re kind of cleaning up in the beginning of October,they’re cleaning up their end of year stuff. 00:27:40 Speaker 2 But for me Q1 is important because that’swhere I can start talking to them about what’s coming in the year, becausethey’re not in busy buying season.00:27:51 Speaker 2 They’re kind of getting paperwork together forthe projects that are coming in the next year. 00:27:56 Speaker 2 So for example, if you’re in construction,you’re not going to be doing. 00:28:00 Speaker 2 Construction projects in the fall. 00:28:01 Speaker 2 Typically, you’re going to be doingthem in the spring and beyond. 00:28:04 Speaker 2 And so this is. 00:28:05 Speaker 2 A perfect time to sit down withthe project teams and talk to. 00:28:09 Speaker 2 Them about some of the. 00:28:09 Speaker 2 Infrastructure stuff thatthey’ve got coming on the docket. 00:28:13 Speaker 2 And can you do capabilities briefingsand can you you know pick their brain about questions that you may have. I say Q1is a great time to be in deep relationship. 00:28:24 Speaker 2 Building time now Q2 is January. 00:28:29 Speaker 2 1st to March 31st. So Q2 is when they’restarting to really get those budgets together. Get those you know specs togetherfor bigger type projects that are happening.00:28:42 Speaker 2 So Q2 is kind of ramping up. Hey, do you need a needs analysis?Hey, do you need to sit down and talk? 00:28:49 Speaker 2 About projects and get an idea of whatyour budget is going to be or what kind of experts you’re going to need,are you troubleshooting things? 00:28:55 Speaker 2 Are you considering exercising options? 00:28:58 Speaker 2 With the current vendor that you have. 00:28:59 Speaker 2 Or you’re thinking of throwing a couple. 00:29:01 Speaker 2 People off and you know, mightbe considering some new people, so we’re going to start talking more deeper. 00:29:06 Speaker 2 Dive things in. 00:29:08 Speaker 2 Q2. 00:29:08 Speaker 2 Q3 is what I call wish list. 00:29:12 Speaker 2 I’m in the construction world. Q3is projects are actually happening at that point.Bids are goingout in Q2 late Q3 projects. 00:29:21 Speaker 2 Starting to happen in Q3 forconstruction it and supplies and. 00:29:27 Speaker 2 So this is a time in Q3 to. 00:29:29 Speaker 2 Start talking to your buyersabout wishlist proposals. 00:29:33 Speaker 2 Q3 is when. 00:29:34 Speaker 2 You could say, hey, I’ve got. 00:29:36 Speaker 2 This training that I want togive you and they tell you. 00:29:38 Speaker 2 That they don’t have. 00:29:38 Speaker 2 A budget this year for it you go well, let me puttogether a spec for you, and if any last minute. 00:29:43 Speaker 2 Money comes available to you. 00:29:46 Speaker 2 You can throw it my way.00:29:47 Speaker 2 Q4 there slammed right now they’re they’respending their money. They’re exercising options they’re awarding contracts withmods with their current incumbents, and if they happen to have leftover money that comes,that’s when the wishlist items start to have. 00:30:03 Speaker 2 And I gotta tell you, September 1st happens,if you start getting calls for proposals and someone gives you a list of items, Ican almost guarantee you’re being asked to provide a file filler loser two or loserloser 3 bit unless that list was yours. 00:30:19 Speaker 2 And that was your wish list. 00:30:20 Speaker 2 So hopefully the queue. 00:30:23 Speaker 2 Q1 through four. I know you wanted it in one word. 00:30:26 Speaker 2 The left, but that’s my basic calendar when I’mlooking at they don’t have wishlist proposals or you’re not waiting for something to comeout toward you now for the end of the year you should be.You should be strategizingfor for 2022 starting October 1st right now. 00:30:45 Speaker 2 You subcontract with the pine. 00:30:47 Speaker 2 Does this shorten the timeit takes to contract success? 00:30:50 Speaker 2 Great question. 00:30:52 Speaker 2 It depends. 00:30:53 Speaker 2 It depends on what. 00:30:54 Speaker 2 Type of business you. 00:30:55 Speaker 2 You are in and what your background is, but Ican give you a little piece of advice to shorten. 00:31:02 Speaker 2 The time frame so many small businesses go from. 00:31:07 Speaker 2 Prime to prime, to prime to the. 00:31:08 Speaker 2 Small business officer. 00:31:10 Speaker 2 They go to their events. 00:31:11 Speaker 2 They register at their site.00:31:13 Speaker 2 They look at their procurement stuff. 00:31:15 Speaker 2 That’s not what I want you to do. 00:31:18 Speaker 2 What I want you to do is pick out the primesthat are hanging out in the agencies that you’re hanging out in, so those mightbe other small businesses that you. 00:31:27 Speaker 2 Never heard of before. 00:31:28 Speaker 2 So you need to do. 00:31:29 Speaker 2 Your homework on who they are. 00:31:31 Speaker 2 OK, the second second thing you’re goingto do is start calling on those agencies to find out which one of theprimes are doing really good job, because those are the primesyou want to team with.00:31:43 Speaker 2 And then when you startsitting down with those primes, you’re going to say listen, I’m not cominghere looking for a handout from you. 00:31:51 Speaker 2 To subcontract, I’ve been calling on youragencies and I know who your customers are and they’re saying really good things aboutyou, but they’re also talking to me about X training this supply that and what I’d liketo do is, since you already have a contract.00:32:06 Speaker 2 Vehicle I’d like to the to bring thebusiness to you and run it through you first. 00:32:14 Speaker 2 Now you have their attention. 00:32:16 Speaker 2 They realize you get it. 00:32:19 Speaker 2 They’re not looking for vendors that aretrying to get a piece of their business. 00:32:23 Speaker 2 They’re looking for vendors thatare going to bring them business, so you want to speed up theirrelationship of subcontracting. 00:32:31 Speaker 2 Walk in with a piece of businessor an introduction to someone. 00:32:35 Speaker 2 Inside the government thatyou think would be a good teaming opportunity for you and you’regoing to get their attention very quickly. 00:32:43 Speaker 2 OK, let’s see environmentalconsulting remediation. 00:32:48 Speaker 2 Oh, someone was just askingabout environmental consulting. 00:32:50 Speaker 2 I love environmental consultingand one of my long term clients is an environmental consultant,woman owned small business as well, and subcontracting with what theydo is exactly what I’m talking to you about.00:33:04 Speaker 2 They do their homework, they know theirclients, they’re focused on certain agencies, and they’re only approaching teaming partnersthat are already in the agencies they’re in. 00:33:15 Speaker 2 They’re interviewing the federal governmenton how good of a vendor they are. 00:33:20 Speaker 2 It’s important and then approaching them sayingI’ve done my homework about you and I’ve talked to your clients about you and I have someopportunities that I might be bringing to you, so you need to be very, very very focused on yourteaming partnerships and your subcontracting. 00:33:36 Speaker 2 And I also I’m going to bring somethingto you that is one of my pieces.00:33:40 Speaker 2 Of advice that I. 00:33:41 Speaker 2 Bring to any business when theylook at teaming with someone. 00:33:46 They need you to. 00:33:47 Speaker 2 Date them for a while. 00:33:49 Speaker 2 Do you know what I mean? 00:33:51 Speaker 2 Go to a networking event with themlike you are here together today. 00:33:57 Speaker 2 I want you to see what theirclients are saying about them. 00:34:03 Speaker 2 I want you to invite them to a capabilitiesbriefing and see how they behave before you sign. 00:34:11 Speaker 2 A teaming agreement and here’s why. 00:34:14 Speaker 2 One time I was working for a very large business. 00:34:17 Speaker 2 And we were capturing $65 million in 18 monthsin the business that we were in. I’m not going to get into much detail, but I had my eye onan 8 day company I wanted to do business with and we had 3000 people in our company thatcould work with this a day as a prime for us.00:34:36 Speaker 2 And we were. 00:34:37 Speaker 2 Watching them and we couldsee that they were doing. 00:34:40 Speaker 2 A lot of. 00:34:40 Speaker 2 Business and they were terrificand then we went to dinner. 00:34:45 Speaker 2 With them at a networking event. 00:34:48 Speaker 2 And they didn’t behave in themanner of a professional way. 00:34:53 Speaker 2 That we would want to behave and. 00:34:55 Speaker 2 So we decided it was better to find. 00:34:58 Speaker 2 A different team partner. 00:35:00 Speaker 2 We’ll take another teamingpartners with me to situations and opportunities, and they’ve taken the business. 00:35:07 Speaker 2 From me, so I would say, and this is foryou, small businesses who are terrific. 00:35:14 Speaker 2 Don’t sign up for a mentor overnight. 00:35:19 Speaker 2 Because you’re married to one and you’restuck with them and it’s hard to divorce them, so I want you to network and see howthey behave and how they work with you. 00:35:30 Speaker 2 Are they just using you for a? 00:35:32 Speaker 2 Pass through or.00:35:33 Speaker 2 For a name on a slide, or are you? 00:35:35 Speaker 2 Actually going to pass business to each other. 00:35:38 Speaker 2 So I want you to on both sides. 00:35:41 Speaker 2 Large and small business. 00:35:42 Speaker 2 Says I want you to be super picky if you’re ina bulpin of a whole bunch of small businesses working with Booz Allen or khaki or or a large,you know, let’s say Turner Construction or Clark construction, or think of the large primes in yourbackyard, and you’re with a whole group of people. 00:35:59 Speaker 2 Have they really given you businessor are they using your name? 00:36:03 Speaker 2 For a slide. 00:36:04 Speaker 2 Again, and they haven’t given youa piece, it’s time to number one.00:36:10 Speaker 2 Start calling on the governmentyourself and bring these people business and see how how differently they behave. 00:36:16 Speaker 2 And also I want you to see if you canreally help each other build business. 00:36:21 Speaker 2 Do tests before you bring himinto the most important deals. 00:36:25 Speaker 2 That you have going test your clientsbefore you sign on the dotted line. 00:36:30 Speaker 2 Large and small businesses. 00:36:35 Speaker 2 Anybody else have questions? 00:36:37 Speaker 2 Bring them to the, bring them tothe chat or come to the microphone. 00:36:41 Speaker 2 I don’t know how the room is working, but. 00:36:44 Speaker 2 I really would love. 00:36:45 Speaker 2 Oh hi, and Latonya you have. 00:36:46 Speaker 2 A question, how are you? 00:36:48 Speaker 3 Eileen, how are you? 00:36:51 Speaker 2 Yeah, you look like such aproud look at you looking fine. 00:36:55 Speaker 2 What are? 00:36:56 Speaker 3 Bullace members, so I gotta bring my a game. 00:37:00 Speaker 4 Right you. 00:37:00 Speaker 2 Look awesome, thank you so. 00:37:03 Speaker 3 Much and never ladies, but can we justsay this is an incredible session? 00:37:08 Speaker 3 As usual, the catalyst always brings the best, but wow Eileen, I tell you justgiving these last couple of.00:37:13 Speaker 3 Moments that you shared. 00:37:14 Speaker 3 Or like man. 00:37:17 Speaker 3 Especially about dating, you know, andand kind of checking him out first. 00:37:20 Speaker 3 I Oh my gosh, you are so spot onwith that and it’s so interesting that you brought up the portionabout, you know the social skills. 00:37:27 Speaker 3 At dinner I’m with you on that one because I havegone, you know, and seeing people just totally take the entire bottle of wine and everybodyhad their own bottle and they enjoyed it. 00:37:37 Speaker 3 And you could tell by the end of the day.00:37:39 Speaker 3 But my question you know the end. 00:37:42 Speaker 2 Of the evening. 00:37:42 Speaker 2 It’s really upsetting though, that thatour germs haven’t even been passed yet, and the person is, you know, falling over. 00:37:49 Speaker 2 It’s like they can’t even hold their liquor. 00:37:50 Speaker 2 I didn’t have it, but you gave an. 00:37:52 Speaker 2 Old it so. 00:37:53 Speaker 2 I just say really watch their behavior. 00:37:55 Speaker 2 In a networking event especially. 00:37:58 Speaker 2 Because then you’ll know if you’re working with. 00:37:59 Speaker 2 Top notch people or not? 00:38:01 Speaker 2 If they’re there for business. 00:38:02 Speaker 3 Right, and so my question is, do you howdo you recommend that, say for example? 00:38:08 Speaker 3 Once you’ve teamed.00:38:09 Speaker 3 With an organization or group orindividual and then things start to happen that you didn’t really expect, you know. 00:38:15 Speaker 3 So how do? 00:38:16 Speaker 3 You deal with some of those you. 00:38:17 Speaker 3 Know Oh my gosh, we’re already. 00:38:18 Speaker 3 Married, I think that’s the theanalogy you use and you know. 00:38:22 Speaker 3 Now that we’re together, how can we? 00:38:24 Speaker 3 How can we get through this? 00:38:25 Speaker 3 ’cause sometimes it’s just like Oh my God, what? 00:38:26 Speaker 2 Right? 00:38:27 Speaker 3 Have we done? 00:38:29 Speaker 2 I think 1. 00:38:29 Speaker 2 Of the biggest pieces of advice I have foryou, Latonya is not to sign any exclusives. 00:38:37 Speaker 2 Now when you were talking about mentorprotege, you’re kind of stuck with that prime, so I don’t want you to handle.00:38:43 Speaker 2 It’s like it’s that’s a marriage, but when you’reteaming partner I would do it based on the project and then sign everybody up around the project. 00:38:52 Speaker 2 Now, if you’re not the Prime Latonyaand someone brings you in as a. 00:38:56 Speaker 2 Hub you can’t sell around them andstart sneaking stuff behind their back. 00:39:02 Speaker 2 You keep bringing it back to the primeand they’ll keep taking care of you. 00:39:07 Speaker 2 You can sell the other agencies, but don’t messaround with the one that they brought you in on.00:39:12 Speaker 2 And the same goes the other way around. 00:39:14 Speaker 2 It’s a gentleman degree man I. 00:39:16 Speaker 2 Hate to be sexist. 00:39:17 Speaker 3 Like yeah, but. 00:39:17 Speaker 2 It’s an agreement that once you sign and. 00:39:20 Speaker 2 You’re working on. 00:39:21 Speaker 2 A project together on an agent. 00:39:23 Speaker 2 The client, so for example clients. 00:39:25 Speaker 2 Tend to come to us. 00:39:26 Speaker 2 As Subs you know I like yourprice better than theirs.00:39:29 Speaker 2 I don’t want their markup anymore. 00:39:30 Speaker 2 I want to work. 00:39:31 Speaker 2 You go hold on I. 00:39:32 Speaker 2 Gotta talk to the prime and if the. 00:39:34 Speaker 2 Prime gives you blessings, then you’re OK, but you gotta be reallysensitive because the last thing you want is 1. 00:39:42 Speaker 2 Prime to be mad at you. 00:39:43 Speaker 2 And to tell other people, this person sells.00:39:45 Speaker 2 Around so, and that’s the same. 00:39:47 Speaker 2 Thing you expect from your people. 00:39:49 Speaker 2 So let me give you a quick exam. 00:39:50 Speaker 2 Sample I had an opportunityin Sioux Saint Marie to work. 00:39:54 Speaker 2 On a green. 00:39:55 Speaker 2 Roof OK, this green roof in SiouxSaint Marie is cold up there. 00:39:59 Speaker 2 It was the 1st. 00:40:00 Speaker 2 Green roof in America. 00:40:01 Speaker 2 And it was the first successful one, but it. 00:40:03 Speaker 2 Was slipping off the roof. 00:40:06 Speaker 2 There’s flipping right and she says. 00:40:08 Speaker 2 Like oh noes 00:40:09 Speaker 2 Custom Border Protection up there and they were so proud of it, littleslippy now our project manager that we had. 00:40:15 Speaker 2 She did her dissertation on that roof. 00:40:19 Speaker 2 Her teacher built that roof andshe was our green roof expert, so GSA public building serviceswanted to use her right to. 00:40:30 Speaker 2 Fix this thing, but they. 00:40:31 Speaker 2 Couldn’t use us. 00:40:32 Speaker 2 As the prime. 00:40:33 Speaker 2 They had three ID IQ holders in Michigan thatthey would say they’re running it through them. 00:40:40 Speaker 2 So the project manager said Eileen, go introduce yourselves to thesethree vendors who have the bridge.00:40:46 Speaker 2 And so I talked to each of the three. 00:40:49 Speaker 2 And this Eileen, are you talking to the other two? 00:40:51 Speaker 2 And I said yes, I am. 00:40:53 Speaker 2 And they said, are you giving him the same price? 00:40:56 Speaker 2 And I said yes, I am. 00:40:57 Speaker 2 So then they knew I was givingthe same price to all three and. 00:41:02 Speaker 2 They figured out their. 00:41:03 Speaker 2 Own markup, but that bad boy was mine. 00:41:06 Speaker 2 Right, so it’s it’s being open andtruthful and fair as much as you can.00:41:14 Speaker 2 Latonya, when you’re working andexpect it out of your own vendors too. 00:41:20 Speaker 3 Excellent, thank you, Eileen. 00:41:23 Speaker 2 You’re welcome. 00:41:24 Speaker 4 Thank you Eileen. 00:41:25 Speaker 2 OK, really. 00:41:25 Speaker 4 I’m gonna see. 00:41:27 Speaker 4 Do we have any questions in the live audience? 00:41:29 Speaker 4 Anybody have a question for Eileen? 00:41:37 What websites do you use the most? 00:41:40 Speaker 2 When you’re looking for posted RFP’s. 00:41:44 Speaker 2 Great question. 00:41:45 Speaker 2 Uhm, there’s a couple. 00:41:47 Speaker 2 Of course you’ve got. 00:41:49 Speaker 2 00:41:50 Speaker 2 Which is posted RFP’s. You’ve got fedconnect, you’ve got dibs. You’ve got all these. All these you know areas. Of courseif you’re on GSA schedule you can use eBay. 00:42:03 Speaker 2 But I say have a really strong bid, no bid process before you get suckeredinto, I’m sorry, invited into writing a loser.00:42:14 Speaker 2 I mean, an opportunity bid to send in. 00:42:17 Speaker 2 OK? 00:42:18 Speaker 2 I use those public bid sites to peel names. 00:42:21 Speaker 2 From those solicitations for next time, unless I knew it was coming, andI knew exactly what was going on. 00:42:32 Speaker 1 Thanks for watching. 00:42:33 Speaker 1 If you found this video informative,please give it a thumbs up. 00:42:37 Speaker 1 And I’ll see you soon..

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