A reader writes: "I struggle with all the requirements that potential customers expect me to submit. Why can't I just give them some references and a good price rather than jumping through hoops?"

Simply publishing a generic Quality Control Plan that does not address the needs of the specific account is unprofessional and an insult to the prospective customer. Yes, there are prospects who simply want the lowest price and oftentimes do not plan on keeping the winning bidder for very long. Their strategy seems to be to squeeze as many concessions as they can from a BSC before terminating them and going on to the next well intended service provider. Oftentimes they have become jaded over time in dealing with BSC's that promise more than they can produce for the income provided and simply "play the game."

Although you may want to pursue every opportunity, it might be wise to evaluate the track record of past service providers and proceed with caution in dealing with a prospect that cannot seem to be satisfied with the price they are willing to pay. Your best approach with such a prospect is to know your numbers and have standards that can be justified by the either your own studies or other outside published time standards. Do you have a customized, written quality control plan that addresses the legitimate concerns of the account in question? Can you track performance and document corrective action steps to address performance issues based on a reasonable interpretation of the Statement of Work?

Remember that tasks multiplied by the frequency generates the direct labor hours necessary to fulfill the contract expectations. You must be paid for what you do if you are to stay viable.

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.