New from MPS: Total Insights

MPS recently added a new service: Total Insights. One of our reporters sat down with Jimmy Church, Business Development Manager, to learn more about it.

MPS Reporter: What is Total Insights?

JIMMY: Total Insights is all about providing leaders and decision-makers with the complete picture so they can make informed decisions. What we do is a) gather the relevant data; b) analyze, synthesize, and turn that data into useful information; and c) to top it off we deliver specific and actionable recommendations.

MPS Reporter: What inspired you to develop this service?

JIMMY: We noticed that in many organizations, leadership either doesn’t pay attention to the needs of their customers and stakeholders, or they simply lack the data they need to make informed decisions.  Leaders need a quick way to acquire the information they need so they can make decisions to move their organization forward.

MPS Reporter: Who is the target customer?

JIMMY: Really any organization could benefit from this service, but right now we are looking to serve nonprofits and industry associations. M Powered Strategies is an Employer of National Service, and part of our mission is to help nonprofits and service-oriented organizations realize their goals.

MPS Reporter: How is information gathered?

JIMMY: We gather data from two types of sources. First we talk to the decision-makers in the client organization. Based on those interviews, we reach out to the other stakeholders, members, and beneficiaries, with specially designed anonymous surveys. This way we avoid issues of personality and politics.

MPS Reporter: Can you tell us about any specific cases where Total Insights really impacted an organization?

JIMMY: Well a few months ago, an executive at a leading association needed external information so he could help the management team make some key decisions. We had a meeting with the whole senior management team to learn about their vision – their needs and their objectives. Based on that input, we were able to determine the types of information they needed from their membership base.

We sent specially tailored surveys out to 12,000 members. Once the data was collected, we held facilitated sessions with each of the management teams to review the raw data and the analysis. Then we came up with a list of 50 very specific recommendations – all supported by data that came directly from customers or staff members – that the organization can implement to enhance the value they provide to their members.

The results of our work essentially became half of the agenda at their annual flagship conference, where prominent government and financial leaders were in attendance.  The COO presented the findings, calling it “The Future of the Industry,” because that was one of the sections in the survey. (The COO, by the way, said it was the best membership survey she had seen in her entire career.)

MPS Reporter: That’s fantastic! It must be so rewarding to bring Total Insights into an organization.

JIMMY: What I like is that, by doing this kind of data-based re-set, Total Insights gets senior leaders excited about their mission again.

 

 

 

Developing Business at Industry Events by Ashley Rezai, PACE Cohort 7

LinkedIn is one of the most popular professional social media platforms around, and has made networking online an easy option in the digital age. Nevertheless, online connections cannot replace the value of attending events and meeting people in the flesh. As successful as social media is at providing networking opportunities, face time with potential clients is an invaluable part of business development. So how do you capitalize on opportunities at a real-life industry event?

First, do your research. Who are the speakers? What projects have they worked on? What is their area of expertise? This may seem like a lot of work, but a quick Google search will give you a lot of answers and a lot of context. This will prepare you to speak comfortably with attendees, and hopefully even the speakers themselves.

Once you research the speakers, feel free to do some digging into any of the topics that jump out at you. It never hurts to have some background knowledge. Even though no one expects you to be an expert on every topic, you might benefit from knowing that “the cloud” is more often referring to data storage, rather than a collection of water particles.

Next, bring your A-game. We all know the basics—dress appropriately, bring your business cards, easy on the open bar, etc. The strategy lies in what you do once you actually start talking to people. A business developer has three goals at an industry event. 1) Meet potential clients and be prepared to answer questions and highlight your company’s unique qualities. 2) Learn more about your competitors and what they are doing differently. 3) Gather information about pain points in your industry and any upcoming business opportunities.

Finally, add some personal flavor. When researching which industry event to go to, pick one that genuinely speaks to your interests. When talking about your service lines, be enthusiastic about what your business means to you. And when asking other attendees questions, pay attention to their answers instead of thinking about what you are going to say next. In the digital age, it’s easy for us to replace personal interaction with online communication. But taking the time to regularly seek personal connections in your industry’s network will have a lasting, positive impact on your company.

M Powered Strategies Adds Training Services to GSA MOBIS Contract

gsa-logoAfter successfully completing two projects for the Federal Government in direct alignment to the services included under GSA MOBIS SIN 874-4, M Powered Strategies (MPS) formally applied for and was awarded this key addition to our MOBIS contract. MPS is now poised to offer its extensive Professional Development Services, which include Executive & Leadership Coaching, Team Building & Development, Apprenticeship Programs, Portfolio of Skills Development Training Courses, and Curriculum & Instructional Systems Design, to our Federal clients.

M Powered Strategies® Gets HUBZone Certification

Posted in Business Development / Corporate Updates on January 05, 2015

Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) logoConsistent with its mission to increase the effectiveness of organizations and the communities surrounding them, M Powered Strategies, Inc. (MPS) has been awarded HUBZone certification status as recognized by the Small Business Administration (SBA). Having employed some of the best and brightest talent from up and coming urban DC communities for over the past 13 years, MPS is proud to be recognized as a new member of the SBA HUBZone program and looks forward to contributing to continued economic development in historically underutilized business zones. MPS sends a warm thank you to the SBA for this tremendous opportunity and looks forward to an exciting 2015!

Partners & Pairings 2013 – An M Powered Strategies Tradition

Posted in Business Development / Corporate Events on March 12, 2013

From an enormous picture window on the second floor of Sonoma Restaurant and Wine Bar, the Capitol dome could be seen shining brightly in the chilly pre-Sequester night. Inside, luminaries of the consulting world mingled with M Powered Strategies staff, discussing the current consulting environment, past performances, and future possibilities. The occasion: M Powered Strategies’ Third Annual Partners and Pairings soiree.

Kendall Lott welcomed the guests noting that “This is a night to celebrate our partners as we work to bring our services to market. Tonight is not about business, it’s about our relationships, and it is nice to see you over a glass of wine.” The guests were current and potential partners—people whose organizational goals are in alignment with M Powered Strategies, or whose areas of expertise complement the MPS portfolio.  Fine wines, cheese pairings and a charcuterie buffet provided the perfect accompaniment to the after-hours gathering, along with special touches, such as gift bottles of wine, which were raffled off, and a video slide show, from MPS’ in-house video producer.

“I am thrilled with the outcome of this year’s Partners and Pairings,” noted Danielle O’Bannon, the event coordinator. “It was a wonderful opportunity to connect with our current partners and to initiate new partnerships.”

The annual Partners and Pairings has become a tradition at M Powered Strategies, one which we look forward to continuing for many years to come.

Second Annual Partners and Pairings Event a Success

Posted in Business Development on March 19, 2012

 Partners and Pairings reception

The weather was warm, the mood was convivial, and feedback from the second annual Partners and Pairings reception was positively effusive.

Great idea…great venue…wonderful turnout.  D.M. –  CenturyLink

I thoroughly enjoyed the evening and making many new contacts as well as seeing old friends.  A first class event!  B.M. – DAI Solutions

It was a wonderful event and I found it to be very helpful in the networking process.  S.T. – Radius

On March 1st, M Powered Strategies hosted representatives of 19 companies from around the Beltway to an evening of networking and wine tasting. The event, organized by Selena Hunn of M Powered Strategies, took place at the Lorien Hotel and Spa in Old Town, Alexandria. Renowned DC chef Robert Weidmaier provided the catering. After a brief wine-pairing presentation, the guests indulged in scrumptious hors d’oeuvres while mingling in the elegant living room and library, and around the fire pit on the terrace.

The general consensus was that M Powered Strategies’ annual gathering proved once again to be a great way for consultants to forge new business relationships and to further develop existing ones.

M Powered Strategies Masters the Art of Proposal Writing

Posted in Business Development / Professional Development on January 18, 2012

M Powered Strategies employees at Proposal Writing training sessionWith several new service lines opening up, Proposal Writing has taken on an added urgency at M Powered Strategies. In an effort to include all our employees in the business development process, 2012 kicked off with an intense and inspiring all-hands, all-day session on the art of Proposal Writing.

Led by Neal Levene of Levene Strategies, the training was an excellent demonstration of how to properly plan out and execute a federal government Request for Proposal.   He provided valuable insight into the government review process, which is key to putting together a successful proposal.

As part of an ongoing commitment to the professional growth of our employees, all staff members are encouraged to explore areas of personal interest. Whenever possible, M Powered Strategies will provide training to acquire the knowledge and the skills needed to pursue these interests.  Several more training and certification courses have already been scheduled for 2012. Looking forward, M Powered Strategies is well positioned and stronger than ever in the increasingly competitive environment of government consulting.

ACT-IAC Conference is a Success

Posted in Business Development / Community Involvement on August 03, 2011
ACT-IAC SBC Planning Committee

ACT-IAC Small Business Conference Planning Committee – Featuring Government Conference Chair Beth Owen, Department of Interior and Government Vice Chair, Steve Cooper, Federal Aviation Administration

Returning for a second year, M Powered Strategies provided strong volunteer and participation support to the ACT-IAC Small Business Conference (SBC), which was held on April 7 at the JW Marriot Hotel in Washington, DC. Martha Johnson, GSA Administrator, Dan Gordon, OFPP Administrator, and Marie Johns, Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, served as keynote speakers at this year’s conference, which focused on the role of small businesses as “Drivers, Leaders, and Key Players” in the government marketplace.

With over 340 industry and government attendees, the conference was designed not only for small businesses looking to grow to the next level but also for large businesses interested in learning more about and pursue partnership opportunities with innovative small businesses. Throughout the day, attendees were able to choose from six interactive workshops that enabled them to develop a better understanding as to how they could be successful at growing their businesses.

Service Excellence SBC Members

Service Excellence – SBC members

Panelists included Tonya Lovelace and Terri Callahan from the Department of Interior, Rafael Roman from Department of Homeland Security, Michael Carroll from General Services Administration, Carole Dunn from Read Team Consulting, and M Powered Strategies’ own Kendall Lott, who provided valuable government and industry insight regarding preparing, responding, differentiating, and assuring compliance during the bidding and proposal process.

Lunch with Leaders Committee Co-Chairs Brenda Maynor of M Powered Strategies and Brendan Walsh of 1901 Group successfully matched over 30 senior government executives with conference attendees as they participated in small group discussions over lunch. In recognition for her time and effort, Brenda was presented with a “Service Excellence” commemorative coin during the May ACT-IAC Membership meeting.

Partners & Pairings a Great Success

Posted in Business Development on April 25, 2011

First Annual Partners & Pairings eventOriginally scheduled during the month of January, the First Annual Partners & Pairings event was postponed due to the untimely winter storm of 2011. Fortunately, February 17th proved to be a luckier date for M Powered Strategies friends, corporate partners and team members who were able to break away from delivery and intense proposal writing to brave the normal DC traffic for the opportunity to mix and mingle for several hours at the beautiful 2941 Restaurant located in Fall Church, VA.

With the lighted restaurant waterfall serving as a picturesque backdrop, partners from SRA, Miracle Systems, Integrity One, and Avise tasted a variety of selected wines from around the world and sampled an assortment of delicious hors d’oeuvres specifically “partnered” by the establishment’s Sommelier and Head Chef. Not to be overshadowed by the wine and food, the evening proved to serve as a wonderful opportunity for M Powered Strategies team members and guests from Innovative Solutions Group, ActioNet, WBB, Triton Federal Solutions, and Hewlett-Packard to talk with current and future partners outside of the work environment, and allowed our special guests to meet one another, discuss their companies’ capabilities and synergies, and to share in discussions for partnering opportunities in the future.

Because relationships matter to M Powered Strategies, we were happy to hear of the successful connections made during Our First Annual Partners & Pairings event and look forward to expanding our circle of friends and partners in the coming year.

On the Business Development Front

Posted in Business Development on April 25, 2011

In the last quarter M Powered Strategies has seen strong growth in the maturation of its business development capacity. With the implementation of the Sugar CRM system, the company has added over $7 million in opportunities. The data collection around this is allowing the company’s business development staff to more effectively track and develop these opportunities. Management is also now using this data to more accurately forecast the company’s revenue growth and staffing requirements.

The result? In the last quarter the company has successfully joined several teaming partnerships for large opportunities, participated in the proposal efforts and is now awaiting word on award. Additionally, thanks to the hard work of Brenda Maynor and Jen Mroczek, the Facilitation Service Line will be supporting SAIC at the Department of Health and Human Services (HSS) in the Office of the Chief Information Officer, with the anticipated start date of May 1. We look forward to forging a strong relationship with SAIC and the clients at HHS. Congratulations team!

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