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  • Writer's pictureIan Forbes, Managing Partner, Europe

Business Development: Now More Than Ever

As businesses assess and adapt to the new normal, we’re hearing a consistent hesitancy to resume their pre-virus business development activities. Reasons are many.

“Our own prospects are postponing RFPs”

“Our people are remote, our teams are scattered”

“We’ve got to cut back on investment”

If a company is concerned that current conditions make it hard to engage in new business activities, well The Artemis Partnership has something for that company to consider:

Now is the BEST time to ramp up new business activities

There’s a fundamental truth which all businesses, especially professional services firms, have to understand and accept, and it transcends the current business situation:  The pursuit is won well before the RFP is issued. It’s that time period before the RFP when some competitor has established close relationships with that prospect. And it’s so much easier to do it before the RFP (and before procurement gets involved). By the time the RFP is issued, decision-makers already have a pretty good idea who is most likely to win – or at least who is least likely to win. And the pursuing team has learned how to best position itself and its solution.

Now that many projects and their associated RFPs have been delayed, it’s the perfect time to reach out to those prospects you want to work with. It’s the perfect time to show you understand the challenges they’re facing. And you’d like to talk about how you can help them be successful when some kind of normalcy returns.

Fewer RFPs is one likely outcome of the crisis

Depending on your profession, it’s reasonable to expect fewer projects and RFPs when companies emerge from crisis mode. If your business is oriented toward growth – or even sustaining your P&L in difficult times, you’ll want to get involved is as many appropriate RFPs as possible. And if there are fewer opportunities to pursue, the stakes of winning and losing the ones you do get in are way higher. You simply have to win more often than you were before the crisis. 

Minimally, then, you must start building relationships and establishing your value NOW. And, given what we said above, you probably have the time to do it, and your prospects have the time to engage with you.

What is your firm doing now to maintain business development momentum?

Bob Wiesner | Managing Partner, Americas -

Ian Forbes  | Managing Partner, Europe -

Graham Kean | Managing Partner, Asia -


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