• Deb Yeagle

Getting Meaningful Feedback from Color Reviewers - #8 Proposal Management Lesson Learned


(8) Assign roles to each reviewer and conduct in-briefs / out-briefs for Color Reviews.

Another Pink Team Review down, and all you have to offer your proposal writers is feedback on missing punctuation and grammar mistakes. It’s a typical pet peeve shared by many Proposal Managers – after putting the time and effort into preparing for a proposal color review, there is no way to gauge if your proposal is compliant, compelling, or customer-focused.


If you are not getting adequate contributions from your Color Team Reviewers, then it may be because you are not giving them clear guidance or expectations for their review process and the feedback required.


To provide clear guidance for reviewers, conduct a formal color review in-brief to:


- Assign specific review roles for each Factor / Volume [e.g., compliance with Section C (SOW/PWS requirements); compliance with Section L (proposal instructions); score per Section M evaluation factors and rating tables; including Technical Risk Ratings, Past Performance Relevancy Ratings, and Past Performance Confidence Ratings]


- Assign specific review roles for the overall proposal (e.g., win themes; graphics; consistency between Volumes, such as Technical / Price Volume Dependencies to ensure technical and pricing solutions for staffing are in sync)


- Specify review feedback to be presented at a formal color review out-brief and through in-line comments


- Provide color review feedback templates to guide reviewers’ comments


Keep in mind that the average person can review 40 pages a day when assigning review roles by Factor / Volume.


Once reviewers have their assignments and review guidance, then capture their comments by facilitating a formal color review out-brief to obtain highlights of their review findings. To ensure an effective and efficient out-brief, limit each reviewer’s presentation to a summary of their major comments. In addition, provide the proposal writers have the opportunity to get clarification from the reviewers on any comments that are not understood.


By assigning roles to color team reviewers, aligning their proposal experience and review strengths with their assigned roles, and providing clear expectations for review feedback when in-briefing the color review team, you can obtain valuable feedback to help develop a compliant, compelling, and WINNING proposal.

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