4 Must-See Sessions from WBVE

The Winning Business Virtual Experience ‘Palm Awards’ Highlight Content You Can’t Miss

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APMP’s Winning Business Virtual Experience provided two days of education, exploration of the latest proposal technologies and virtual connection with members from around the world. The hours of discussion and content, presented by the industry’s top thought leaders, were unmatched, and the good news is, attendees have one more week to access it.

Among these exceptional presentations are four standout sessions you must add to your list to watch, as they received a WBVE Palm Award — an honor bestowed upon those selected as favorites, based on session attendance, speaker and APMP staff feedback, and a special committee.

Pre-mortems: The Dark Side of the Win Strategy
Presented by Eve Upton

What’s this session about?

Session description: Where win strategies focus on how to win, pre-mortems focus on how not to lose by bringing a little reality into the room. They are a practical way to shape your strategy and improve your win probability by challenging you to identify and respond to likely causes for losing before you begin, giving you time to take preventative action and avoid the dreaded “if only…”.

Two lessons you’ll leave with:

  1. Embrace the dark side. Conducting a pre-mortem is an opportunity to think about the reasons you may fail in winning before the failure even happens. Using prospective hindsight — imagining an event has already occurred (such as a failed bid) — increases the ability to correctly identify reasons for future outcomes by 30%. When engaging in this process, “we’re not asking what could go wrong, we’re asking what did go wrong,” Upton explained.
  2. Be like a high reliability organization (HRO). An HRO is an organization that operates in hazardous, complex areas without serious accidents or catastrophes. To be like an HRO, Upton said you need to be preoccupied with failure, understand how you bid, embrace pessimism, look for specifics that can be changed, and ensure the team is present and motivated.

Hidden Treasures: Mining for Employees that Help You Sparkle!
Presented by Regina Boyd

What’s this session about?

Session description: This session uses statistics and personal experience as the foundation for a conversation about the racial disparities in our society, in the workplace and within the proposal industry, and suggests how we can begin to correct these disparities.

Two lessons you’ll leave with:

  1. The racial injustice currently happening in our nation is 400 years in the making. The murder of George Floyd put a spotlight on this, as well as on the elephant in the room: systemic and institutional racism, and unconscious racism/implicit bias. Boyd explained how this “elephant” has created economic disparities between white Americans and people of color, specifically African Americans.
  2. Acknowledge your privilege. Hire qualified people who don’t look like you. Look at your internal talent pool when creating new positions or looking to promote.

Inspiration and Diversions from SMA
Presented by SMA, Inc., featuring entertainment by Justin Keats, Michael Yoder and Collin Moulton

What’s this session about?

Session description: Time for a break! Rather than have SMA tell you about its revolutionary Talent on Demand (TOD)® platform that can connect your proposal team staffing needs with its exceptional talent pool, blah, blah … [gain] some light relief from the hours of amazing capture and proposal presentations that will help your development as a proposal professional. Take time out for an hour of humor, wellness, trivia and even magic — and maybe a little about SMA and its TOD® platform.

Two lessons you’ll leave with:

  1. Just because you’re at a virtual conference, doesn’t mean you can’t have fun (and learn a little about staffing your team while doing it).
  2. See lesson No. 1.

Recruiting the Next Generation of Proposal Professionals
Presented by Evelin Gutierrez and Sara Pool

What’s this session about?

Session description: Hosted by the APMP Intentional Career Path (ICP) Committee, this session discusses ideas and tactics to find, recruit and attract the next generation of bid and proposal professionals.

Two lessons you’ll leave with:

  1. Engaging with college students and telling them about the bid and proposal field is a way to secure the sustainability of the profession. Some ways to get involved at universities/colleges include speaking at student clubs and classes or doing department talks; participating in career fairs or alumni/mentor programs; and creating content specific to addressing students, using social media, podcasts, etc.
  2. When engaging with students, be honest, open and passionate. Don’t sugarcoat your day-to-day; talk about the ups and downs of your job but focus on what keeps you in this profession and why you love it.

WBVE sessions are available on demand until Aug. 21.

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