Color team reviews are business development milestones at which experts and managers work to improve the win potential of pursuits. Done correctly, they are a cost effective way to improve the overall success of your capture planning and proposal development efforts.
Differentiate color team reviews from pursuit decision gates. While decision gates determine whether to advance an opportunity to the next phase or end pursuit, color teams strengthen capture planning and proposal development efforts between gates.
Color team reviews are often more tactical than strategic. Decision gates reflect executives’ strategies, directions, goals, and priorities. In contrast, color teams help you move forward with the greatest chance of success by improving quality and customer focus.
Select reviewers with balanced customer, seller management, technical, and cost perspectives. Align their backgrounds to the review. Select color team reviewers capable of offering constructive recommendations, independent of their seniority. Train reviewers if necessary. Do not assume they are qualified of knowledgeable based on their titles or seniority.
Conduct color team reviews to gain unbiased assessments for progress and constructive recommendations for improvement. Define and follow a set process while adapting the review to the size and complexity of the pursuit. Add peer reviews and other intermittent reviews when they will improve your probability of winning (Pwin).
Follow these guidelines for successful color team reviews:
- Define your organization’s color team review points
- Follow a consistent process for each color team review
- Conduct a Blue Team review to assess the capture plan and strategy
- Conduct a Black Hat Review to predict competitors’ likely solutions and strategies
- Conduct a Pink Team to verify compliance and execution of your win strategy
- Conduct a Red Team to predict how your proposal will be scored and make improvements to it
- Conduct a Green Team to review and approve pricing
- Conduct a Gold Team to confirm your proposal incorporates necessary changes from Red and Green Teams and is ready for the Proposal Submittal Decision
- Conduct a White Hat review to record lessons learned and make process improvements
- Select appropriate reviewers and methods for each color team review
Want to know more about color teams and how they can help you win more business? Find out more in the Shipley Proposal Guide.