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October 2012: “Boiler Room” Provides Intense, Rapid Proposal Improvement and Integration

A critical aspect of proposal maturity is maintaining forward progress in the usual several weeks between formal reviews (e.g. Pink to Red). While wall walks and other kinds of in-progress reviews do provide some guidance, the “boiler room” format drives maturity and provides writer heading checks without the need for a formal review.

Its approach is simple: writers present, and the proposal leadership team collaboratively reviews, the entire proposal product in 30 to 45 minute sessions over a one to two day period between each formal review milestone. The boiler room focuses on improvement in critical areas, among others: theme/thesis statements, focus box content, action captions, graphics, strengths, compliance, and overall proposal integration.

With the boiler room approach, the proposal writers and leadership team gain many of the benefits of formal review feedback without the burden and cost of the formal review itself. These benefits are even more apparent in today’s “virtual” proposal development environment—where the writers and leadership team might be on opposite sides of the country, and there may not even be a wall to walk.

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