Thinking about pursuing business opportunities in the government sector?
Are you bedazzled by the dollars spent by the agencies each year?
Enthralled by what you hear about the "ease" of capturing business as a
company with certain socioeconomic designations?
Think it looks easy
Don't be fooled. You can acquire the relationships and domain knowledge
necessary to achieve success, but it takes ongoing planning and participation
and it does not happen overnight.
Here are some of the tips I offer
whenever someone approaches me about doing business with Global
things first. This is a relationship business.
- There is a very
straight-forward principle at play. People do business with those they know,
those they like and those they trust. If you do not fit into at least one of
those areas, your chances of success are greatly
First things second. Knowledge
- Take the time to learn who the Mavens are and how to leverage
Establish/expand your network.
is king (or queen)! In order for you to succeed, you need access to it. In order
to get access to it, you must have relationships a.k.a. your network. Develop
your network sincerely but with a purpose.
- Global One is huge! Even the largest companies
have some specific focus and approach on how they pursue business. You should be
no different. Develop some criteria to help you begin to narrow your focus or
else you will end up spinning your wheels and being largely
Determine what it is you will
- The government and its contractors buy everything. What is
the product, service or solution you intend to offer and why is it/will it be
relevant to the proposed customer base? Do they currently buy it? If no, what do
they currently buy to achieve the resolution which this product, service or
solution provides? Be able to demonstrate proficiency with regard to the
product, service or solution as well.
Determine where it
is you will sell.
- Based on where you are located, figure out what
is available in your immediate area. Bottom line, for most companies, it is
easier and less of a cost impact to do business in your backyard versus across
what agencies are in your immediate "touch" area...
- There are
federal agencies everywhere. Utilize resources such as the Federal Executive
Board to determine which agencies are in your proximity.
which agencies it makes sense for you to pursue.
- Begin learning
the technical and cultural aspects of the agencies to determine a good fit. Not
everyone will like you or your style and your knowledge and expertise will not
be relevant to every organization. These are other factors that come into play
as you press forward which may also impact your growth strategies. This is one
reason to consider strategic teaming relationships. Additionally, other factors
such as industry certifications, bonds and insurance, security clearances and
socioeconomic designations may also come into play.
preliminary research to determine who buys what you intend to
- There are many free, low-cost, mid-level and high-end
resources available which can provide a framework understanding of how and what
various agencies procure.
how it is they buy.
- It's incumbent on you to position yourself
appropriately. If you don't possess the contract vehicles customers want to use,
figure out how to align yourself in such a way that you become viable to
These are just a few of the tips that have helped me over the
years. Please feel free to submit your comments and feedback. You never know, a
tip you offer today might come back to help you later.
- The Chief Visionary