Fifty Plus (50+) - Up for air - OT/some what
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08-25-09, 06:47 PM
Finally - after 10 days of hell I can relax again. A week ago last Monday my boss asked me to help with a proposal at work - they had not asked me to help with any of the others that we have been cranking out for the last several months. But this one was different, it was an important customer going after a complex research grant worth a ton of money and they decided they wanted to go for it after the RFP had been out for 3 months with only 12 days to go. I think they tapped me to pull it together because I was the "old guy" who they could blame if it didn't get out. Well it took me a few days to get my head around it, put a team together, and put it into high gear. We cranked for the last 7 days, working late at night, people pulled together from across the country. Today we sent it out. Reviewers commented it was the best proposal they had seen in years, it was significantly better than those the young "super stars" had been working on for months.
I get so tired of being pigeon holed due to age and experience. It is so sad when what wins is fluff and not stuff. We may or may not win this big order, but I did change a few minds. It cut my weekly mileage in half - but now that I am up for air, I can ride more - and I am 3 days from a long vacation...
08-26-09, 06:37 AM
Good for you. I spent many years on the other end evaluating those responses. I agree that many of the preparers cranked out a lot of fluff and BS. But I was also amazed at how much work companies put into a good response to a complex RFP and how fast they have to work. No easy task and often to no avail. Good luck on this one.
I really wonder about the whole RFP process - here in Ontario they are moving away from sole source for even small projects. It seems that in some cases more work is put out by all the firms preparing proposals than actually goes into the project itself.
08-26-09, 08:08 AM
Thanks for mentioning RFPs, I need to work on one now. :(
Over the course of 33 years I worked my way up from clerk-typist to Petty Bureaucrat. I've done my share of work on rfps, with and without success. Many times we were sorry we were successful! :( The last couple of years reporting on what we were supposed to be doing took more time than the actual work. It was getting so we would eventually either have time to do the work, or the reporting, but not both. The only ride time was in the dark before or after work and the rare Saturday morning when I wasn't at work.
The good news is that a month ago I RETIRED! The pay and bennies aren't anything to write home about, but I have time to ride. I'm also going back to school. Now I get to study what I want to and maybe I'll be able to decide what I want to be when I grow up:lol:
08-26-09, 12:07 PM
HeeHeeHee - I really got a good laugh out of this thread. It really came home. I, too, did not have the proper dress code - a little gray above the collar - for a long time. The division I was in was really bad about this. Then I got transfered, at first against my wishes, into a new division. This was kind of a start up and just about everything we did was new. We had a lot of gray hair around and we got things done and made money. Things were going great but the "masters" still had that "no gray" attitude. One day we woke up and another division took us over - heck - we were making money and being profitable - who wouldn't want to take us over. First thing I did was take advantage of an early out retirement package and split. Within a year, the whiz kids drove the business under and the division no longer existed. Glad I was gone by then.
cyclinfool - go have a great vacation and enjoy the much needed rest.
08-26-09, 12:43 PM
Hey, it doesn't end when you retire.
Developed, running and pushing forward a national organization to end the "wait list" for individuals with disabilities. Developed and am running a petition circulatiNG nationally on the same subject:
Have developed a proposal to our legislature for a total and complete external review of our entire delivery process for individuals with developmental disabilities. Right now it is the most complex and convoluted procedure one might imagine. <SOAPBOX STARTED> Yet, the vested interests are so strongly imbedded, it will take an atomic blast to shove them out of their lofty (and highly paid) seats. How does $369,000 per year in salary and benefits for an executive director of a non-profit case management and service delivery organization sound to you? - Oh, he also teaches part-time at a college to supplement his pay. Comparable positons within state government pay about $70,000, and even California, which has a similar delivery system to Colorado pays about 1/2 that. SInce they select their own Board of Directors, it is a self-sustaining dynasty. <SOAPBOX ENDED>
I even testified before our legislature the last couple of years!
And on and on.
I guess I could stop, but the "human value" component of what I do is so high, I can't get myself out of it.
08-26-09, 01:45 PM
^^^I think I'll go work for a non-profit when I retire. :D
08-26-09, 07:21 PM
<SOAPBOX STARTED> Yet, the vested interests are so strongly imbedded, it will take an atomic blast to shove them out of their lofty (and highly paid) seats. How does $369,000 per year in salary and benefits for an executive director of a non-profit case management and service delivery organization sound to you? - Oh, he also teaches part-time at a college to supplement his pay. Comparable positons within state government pay about $70,000, and even California, which has a similar delivery system to Colorado pays about 1/2 that. SInce they select their own Board of Directors, it is a self-sustaining dynasty. <SOAPBOX ENDED>
Read the book "The Power Broker" about Robert Moses - talk about someone setting themselves up in a self-sustaining dynasty...
08-27-09, 12:43 PM
Back a couple of years ago I stopped accepting consultant work because all I got was problems. Granted, they paid me well, but I got tired pulling the fat out of the fire all the time.
It really has amazed me how much more tranquil it is having your own company. Yes, in the past, there were some times that were painful, but really, very few. And now, we can pace things so that we aren't pulling our hair out because someone decided to go after business that wasn't worth it.
In reality, I am now semi-retired, but a business owner. We are large enough I have people in all important positions. I just watch over our investment.
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