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When less is definitely more…

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The other day, as I was taking my kids to school, I greeted the lollipop lady with a friendly ‘how are you?’, not expecting much of a reply. Imagine my surprise as she leaned into me as we crossed the road and told me in a conspiratorial whisper that she had dreadful ‘bowel problems’ and feared that she might have to beat a rapid retreat to her house at any time. The disturbing vision of the poor woman abandoning her post and fleeing crossed legged followed me all the way home and led me to the conclusion that too much information can sometimes be a bad thing.

How often in bids, do you see too much information in written responses? Information that doesn’t directly answer the question, address compliance or give any obvious benefit of the solution. These ‘unwanted Christmas presents’ obscure the key messages and leave the evaluator confused or overwhelmed by the tidal wave of data

Next time, when a simple ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘just dandy thanks’ will suffice, I will say just that …and shut up.

Ian Sherwood PPM.APMP – Bids & Proposals Director

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