The Immediate Need For Wish-List ScopeOctober 05, 2020 | By Wayne O'Neill
In the typical business climate, one of the biggest challenges for service providers is finding the right time to have “wish list” conversations with owners. It can be difficult to unlock those big, 5-to-10-year project ideas when engaged in the normal flow of business activity.
This year is different. The pandemic has caused such a disruption that everything is on the table. You may think that doesn’t make sense because your clients have been in survival mode for the past several months and wish list projects seem completely removed from the equation.
Let me help you reset your thinking to see how the disruption recovery period is actually the ideal time to identify and align with wish list project scope. And, thinking even bigger about your role in the process, now is a great time to also re-calibrate your company’s approach to client engagement as part of the pursuit.
Why is Now The Ideal Time to Pursue Wish List Scope?
The bottom line is that wish list scope is bigger now because of the widespread disruption that your clients have experienced this year.
Projects that lacked a true business case or stakeholder buy-in before the pandemic have suddenly been thrust to the forefront of immediate planning. In other words, projects that were on the back burner waiting for a reason to be initiated need to be implemented right now.
– For example, in healthcare, a wish list project may have been implementing touchless parking to optimize patient engagement or creating an entirely new hospital wing for ambulatory care. Pre-pandemic, those types of transformative projects lacked an immediate need among other competing priorities.
Now, the internal conversation is completely different. Five-year planning or master planning is out the window. And, owners are seeking service providers to enter into the conversation to strategize solutions to solve these problems.
– There are countless other examples in industries such as higher education, government, and general business that fit your company. The key for service providers in healthcare or other industries is understanding how to have conversations about wish list projects so that you can strategize comprehensive solutions to grab larger pieces of scope and more project scope.
- Need to adjust your approach to client engagement.
- Need to ask different types of questions.
- Need to talk to influencers and decision-makers at different levels in the client organization.
Take a New Approach to Client Engagement
Finding and aligning with wish list scope requires a different type of thinking. You and your team may be accustomed to simply responding to an RFP at face value aiming to solve one problem with one solution. That linear type of thinking won’t work.
Creativity is required. Authentic connection with your client is required. A larger conversation is required to unlock hidden problems that are not readily evident on the surface of the RFP. This means your team needs to subscribe to a new approach of taking a deep dive into the client’s challenges to identify their true problems.
This approach requires effort, energy, and time, but the reward is worthwhile unlocking the larger problem that sets you on the right path to develop a comprehensive solution. Then, as your team continues down this path, they need to think about having new conversations.
Ask Different Questions to Find Different Answers
Your team may be accustomed to talking to just one department in your client organization. Perhaps your company offers an IT solution, and your team is accustomed to talking to the client’s IT department. In a typical approach, your team would fall into the linear thinking of asking technology questions to solve the IT problem.
To address the larger problem in the organization, though, your team needs to ask different questions and have new conversations. Your team needs to identify how the technology problem affects HR, operations, accounting, and other departments.
This requires fresh thinking to know how to ask different questions that produce different answers that ultimately help you uncover new evidence. Then, to gain even more valuable perspective, your team should engage individuals at different levels in the organization.
Pursue Not-So-Obvious Influencers and Decision-Makers
Imagine that your team unlocks a treasure trove of information about your client’s wish list projects that need to be accelerated. You may think you’re ready to present a solution that solves the entire problem the client is facing to start moving these projects along. But, in actuality, you’re not ready to present the solution until you complete one more step confirming and/or clarifying your evidence.
This means talking to influencers and decision-makers at different levels to gain a deeper understanding of what’s really happening inside the organization. There could be internal political issues that affect how decisions made. Or, there could be business decisions that some individuals or teams in the organization may not be aware of.
If you present a solution that is not aligned with these critical political and business issues, you risk losing the opportunity to win the work. Your team needs to go one more step talking to all relevant individuals who can provide insight, even those not-so-obvious managers and individual contributors who may actually be key influencers inside the organization.
The result is a deeper understanding of the real challenge in the organization, a clear view of the hidden problems behind the problem, and confidence to build a strong case that your solution aligns with wish list projects that need to be implemented right now. Taking this extra step strengthens your position to grab larger project scope and more scope.
Reset Your Thinking to Pursue Wish List Scope Today
Pursuing wish list scope in today’s business environment can produce amazing results for your company. The opportunity to generate more revenue in a sustainable, more consistent manner should be inviting for any service provider.
This approach requires a new way of thinking, though. That’s where we can help. At RESET, we provide business and leadership coaching to service providers who need to win more project scope.
Through our proven methodology, The Connection Process, we’ll help you and your team develop a new approach to client engagement, understand how to ask different questions, and connect with influencers and decision-makers in your client organization.
New project scope is out there ready to be won. Let’s work on your approach to client engagement so that you can find and align with wish list project scope to start growing revenue. Contact us today to discuss.