How Job Sculpting Can Help You Deliver a Better Proposal

Recently I explained why energy and enthusiasm are the fuel powering a bid effort.

When the people working on the bid bring the best of themselves to the job, they are more likely to do their best, most inspired and most creative work. Without their energy and enthusiasm, there is a real risk that the proposal will lack personality and be flavourless and dry.

In a Harvard Business Review piece about job sculpting, Timothy Butler and James Waldroop explain that job satisfaction depends on how well the job reflects the individual’s “deeply embedded life interests”. These are long-held, emotionally driven passions, intricately entwined with our personalities. While life interests may not determine what we are good at, they do drive what kind of activities make us happy. “At work, that happiness often translates into commitment. It keeps people engaged, and it keeps them from quitting,” Butler and Waldroop say.

Delivering job satisfaction to the bid team – as well as a winning bid – can be a challenging task for a Bid Leader.

Bid teams often operate outside traditional reporting lines and boundaries, and team members are usually stretched and hassled and working on the bid as well as their day job.

Notwithstanding this, the principles of job sculpting can help here too. If you have a person on your team with a passion for something specific, like designing a technical solution, let them get on with it. Another person, who loves seeing things done correctly, will get satisfaction from form-filling, project management and production tasks.

Knowing what people's preferences are and the jobs they would enjoy doing, as opposed to just the jobs that need to be done, is an important role for a Bid Leader. When everybody is working on what they are great at, and what they love to do, the energy and enthusiasm that the team contributes will elevate the quality of the proposal.