Winning new work is an ongoing imperative. However, this does not mean winning at any cost or through any means. It means winning the right way, the ethical way. We call it Principle-Centered Winning (PCW). Here are PCW’s major tenets applied to the government contracting arena:
THOU SHALT NOT speak evil of thy customer. Sometimes the walls have ears.
THOU SHALT NOT disparage thy competitor, teammate or subcontractor. Create good, not bad karma.
THOU SHALT NOT undermine thy company’s win probability by word, deed or omission. Always give it your best. No sandbagging.
THOU SHALT NOT be complacent about thy chances of winning. Believe it or not it is yours to lose.
THOU SHALT NOT inflict harm upon thy neighbor, nor shall thou increase thy neighbor’s burdens or “pile on” just because an opportunity arises. Harm is not just physical. Have compassion.
THAT SHALT NOT break thy covenant with thy company or thy team. Be accountable. Meet your commitments. ‘Nuff said.
THOU SHALT NOT discourage thy neighbor, nor shalt thou whine, gossip, complain, mutter or backbite amongst each other. This type of poison spreads like wildfire.
THOU SHALT NOT presume to know everything, or to have all of the answers. Instead, thou shalt listen, be temperate in thy opinions and continually respect and learn from each other. Two ears, one mouth. Try listening — really listening.
THOU SHALT NOT mislead thy customer with claims that are false, misleading, or unsupported. Stand for something; something good.
THOU SHALT NOT enter into any covenant with thy customer that is not in the collective best interests of all parties. Even better — put your customers first. Make them heroes.
Jim McCarthy is a member of the board of advisors for the National Contract Management Association (NCMA) and the owner of AOC Key Solutions, Inc.