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Why I’m done with RFPs (for now)

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I’m so mad at myself. I swore I was done with RFPs.

Then, I got sucked back in.

Sucked back in by the prospect of a fairly interesting gig recently.

Paper

But, like many of the RFPs I’ve been a part of in the past, this one was destined for the same result.

“Thanks, but no thanks.”

Grrrrrrrrrrrrr.

So now, I’m all done. Kaput. No more RFPs.

My solo PR friend Greg Brooks will not be happy, but I’m finished with RFPs–for a while, at least.

Since going solo four-plus years ago, my all-time track record with RFPs is not all that great. In fact, I think I’m oh-fer. As in, I have yet to win one.

Wait, Arik, why are you telling me this? Why are you admitting that you never win RFPs?

Two reasons: 1) I’m secure enough in my work to know where I’m strong (personal referrals) and where I’m weak (RFPs)–why would I sink more time into areas where I’m weak rather than focus more time on areas where I’m strong? (my hit rate on personal referrals is quite high, as is the case for many solo counselors; in fact, I just received two referrals this week that I’m hoping work out in short order), and 2) RFPs are a joke for the solo counselor. Let me tell you why.

I understand that they’re a necessarily evil for agencies. I get it. I’ve been a part of them before on the agency and corporate side.

But for solos? I don’t see an upside.

They’re time consuming.

They typically ask for free ideas (no thank you–I give away plenty for free as it is).

And, last but definitely not least, as a solo you are usually competing with agencies that have many more resources in their RFP arsenals.

Oh, and not to mention, some of these RFPs I’ve seen floating around aren’t exactly for a King’s ransom. So, not only is the organization asking for your time and your free ideas, they’re asking for all this for what may amount to a mid-sized project fee.

Not worth the effort.

So, I’m stopping. Right now.

We’re all done here.

photo credit: jenni from the block via photopin cc

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Why I’m done with RFPs (for now)

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