Getting Better Results from Reviews

People contribute what they can.

This is something I’ve heard more than once, usually when ranting about getting spell-checkers and typo-alerters and colour-pallete-criticizers when what I wanted was compliance-confirmers or solution-improvers or presentation-enhancers.

People contribute what they can.

It’s true: They do, and I do, and not a mite more.

But people also contribute no more than the document allows. If our document is incomplete or badly organized or unedited or, sigh, all three, then any high-powered reviewers will be reduced to marking-up the document for  typos. They certainly won’t be able to provide detailed direction on how to improve it.

They won’t be able to fine-tune the integration of the marketing themes.

Or to suggest better ways to present corporate experience.

Or to recommend graphical presentations that will clarify the concepts.

Or to identify subtle variations in terminology that will confuse evaluators.

Or to recognize inconsistent content across sections.

Or to flag extraneous content.

If we want reviewers to contribute the best they can, we have to give them a document that is the best we can make it. We have to give them a document that we think is nearly perfect. Otherwise, we’re asking reviewers to identify things we already know.

Me, I’ve never been on a proposal where we had that kind of time, or expertise, to waste.

 

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