Project Proposal Writing: How To Write A Winning Project Proposal

By | December 3, 2019


[Music Intro]>>Hi. I’m Devon Dean, content director here
at ProjectManager.com. Today I’m going to teach you how to help sell your project using
a project proposal. A key thing to remember is that people buy from people. Don’t expect
the project proposal document that you put together to be taken up by the decision makers
in an organization in isolation of any communication you’ve had with them and award funding and
resources and mindshare to that project. It’s important to remember this because you can
write the best project proposal document but without that people interaction you have a
slim to no chance of getting your project funded. While you’re preparing the project proposal
document it’s really important for you, your project sponsors and the champions of
your project to go out there and actively lobby the decision makers of your organization
about your project. Use those lobbying sessions and those one on one meetings to actually
refine and hone your understanding of what the problems are in your organization and
the benefits that your project can actually realize, that strike a chord with those decision
makers. In developing your project proposal document I highly recommend in tandem going
out there and actively seeking the feedback of those decision makers so that feedback
help you refine and forge the sales pitch you put together in your proposal document. Your decision makers are going to make the
decision whether to thrill or kill that project within the first five minutes of picking up
your project proposal document so it’s really, really critical that you make a big impact
right at the start of that project proposal document. The way you do that is in stating
that problem statement. You really need to paint a bleak picture of your organization
that shows or depicts the problems that you’re having in the organization which could be
overcome had your project been in production when those problems occurred. Highlight some
specific examples of where opportunities were missed or where risk or costs were incurred
that your project could have prevented or could have gained access to in terms of opportunities
if your project had delivered by the time of that event. Efficiency gains or general skills uplift
are not the messages you want to communicate in terms of looking for those problem benefits.
By saying that Sally works 50 hours a week and your project is going to solve that problem
is really not going to strike a chord for those decision makers. Look for those specific
examples of where your company missed an opportunity or incurred costs because your project wasn’t
in place. Put those in your problem statement. Now the vision statement is a section that
needs to tie your project to the company’s long range strategy and vision and long range
goals. Without tying your project in to your organizational strategy and vision you run
the risk of having your project being looked upon as a rogue project: it’s out there
in the distance, it really doesn’t fit with what we’re doing so you run a risk of not
having your project being funded because of that reason. You need to tie your project
into your company’s organizational strategies and vision. Benefits further expand upon the vision that
your project will have, that you paint the picture of that vision. You’re going into
a bit more specific details on what are the things your project will deliver, what new
capabilities or what costs you’re going to avoid by having the project deliverables
in place. Be very specific about the benefits and make sure they’re things that are measurable. The deliverables section further goes into
another level of decomposition about what your project is going to deliver. It talks
about the artefacts which your projects will deliver and how those will be delivered in
terms of what the users can expect. A deliverable might be, for example, for a call center project
you’re delivering new computer telephony integration. That would be a deliverable when
that call center has that equipment. Success criteria are very important to outline
in that project proposal. You need to be able to have smart success criteria which mean
it’s specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound. These success criteria, once
they’re met, give the project owners, the decision makers and the stakeholders 100%
confidence that your project has achieved success. It’s important that you list out
those criteria which everyone is looking at your project to deliver. The next section is talking about how your
project is going to achieve the deliverables and success criteria and benefits. In here
is where your deadlines are listed, where the project plan comes together and what the
approach to delivery might be for your project. Are you going to use external vendors? Are
you going to use internal staff? Are you going to use an agile approach to delivering that
project or are you going to use a more traditional waterfall method to enable your project to
deliver on its deliverables? Lastly, of course, the cost and the budget.
Here’s where you pull it together and you show the funding plan for that project and
how it’s going to achieve its deadlines against those deliverables and for the dollar
value. Now if you find in the first section that
you’re getting into quite a lot of detail that runs past, let’s say, two pages I think
it’s really important to take the time and consolidate all the high points from these
into an executive summary for that document. Put the high level problem, visions and benefits
in that exec summary. As I mentioned before, decision makers will take about five minutes
looking at your proposal to make sure that it’s something they’re going to fund or
decide that they’re not going to fund it in this year. Ensuring those messages are
concise is really critical and by putting these elements into executive summary if you
find them going long is a really important way for you to quickly communicate those ideas. It’s important to remember the flow of the
document in the proposal. You need it to flow like a fiction book. You need to tell a story
and paint a picture and leave no stone unturned for your decision makers to ponder. Everything
needs to flow from the start of the problem down to the cost and benefits in terms of
the key themes of your project need to be expounded upon, need to be mentioned at the
start and then further drilled down upon throughout the rest of your project proposal. If you
have items that you’re introducing in your deliverables, for example, that don’t fit
in with solving the problems you’ve identified up here or fit in with the benefits that you’re
going to realize your decision makers will look at that and it will cause them to think
a little bit more about your proposal in terms of does this proposal really communicate in
a tight way the objectives that it’s going to achieve for the organization. It needs
to flow. All the items here need to mesh with one another and not introduce any new topics
or any new items as you go along in the project document. Your project proposal is one key way for you
to communicate your project’s vision and benefits to the organization but a project
proposal in itself is not going to sell your project and get it funded and resourced. Only
you can do that. Only your champions and your sponsor can do that. Like I said in the start,
the proposal will help you sell your project and get it funded and resourced but really
you need to be there actively lobbying for that project and getting it off the ground. For more project management tips and tricks
and to try out our software come join us at ProjectManager.com.

100 thoughts on “Project Proposal Writing: How To Write A Winning Project Proposal

  1. Voluntary Counselors Post author

    We are a community based organisation looking for funding. Please help us get donors.

    Reply
  2. Working Progress Post author

    Wow this helped me out tremendously!

    Reply
  3. OG Troll Troll Post author

    Should I include an introduction or just open with the problem?

    Reply
  4. Hellsong 99 Post author

    I would like to know if this could also be applicable to investors to fund a startup?

    Reply
  5. Michael Letsa Post author

    help me solve this Practical project work…
    IDK was asked to design the network infrastructure, specify and supply suitable hardware and software licensing and carry out the installation and configuration.The final solution now provides a facility for information to be shared among users at three geographically separate sites, the data is secure and protected and the infrastructure maintained and supported by our service engineers.

    • Solution Components

    • Network Components

    • Microsoft Windows Server 2012 Open Licences

    • Symantec Backup Solution

    Reply
  6. Jim Brentard Post author

    Not bad! Have a look at my book, it's a good complement to this video. You will learn how to double your salary as a project manager within a year. And to finally relax about your work performance! https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07DNJT469/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B07DNJT469&linkCode=as2&tag=geeklyoursman-20&linkId=54877eef7bba334e0d6c04bd254431d0

    Reply
  7. David Becket Post author

    Do you really think you need to start with a bleak view of the company? I think that may put a lot of people off. Also, cool accent! What is that, American Australian?

    Reply
  8. Pat Pathinayake Post author

    Thank you so much for the speech. It is simply brilliant. One of the BEST I have seen.

    Reply
  9. Susan Ndungu Post author

    I am a PMI member and Project Management Masters Degree holder, I like this
    In our research service
    We provide Research & Development
    From need Identification to Deliverable implementation and M&E of the project
    www.brixwelllimited.com
    [email protected]

    Problem
    Vision
    Benefit
    Deliverable
    Success criteria
    Deadline /plan/Approachroblem
    Vision
    Benefit
    Deliverable
    Success criteria
    Deadline /plan/Approach

    Reply
  10. Simon Romero Post author

    and…. this is how you skip years and years in university

    Reply
  11. Glo Conect Telecommunicacão Post author

    Hello, i want to set a professional Internet service provider BUSINESS PROPOSAL do you offer this service?
    here is my e-mail : [email protected]
    [email protected]
    Whatsapp: +5511964375983
    If you can do it for us…. grato!!

    Reply
  12. jerome bayiha Post author

    Very nice explanation ,but my question is can a dream be realised into a Project?????

    Reply
  13. Harvin Toledo Post author

    Congratulations! You have a good talent explaining how to write a project proposal. Certainly, sometimes we don't have any idea from what point we must start.

    Reply
  14. Ambassador Platon S Plakar Jr Post author

    Nice lecture! Thanks a lot for this piece. I have a NGO and we are thinking of applying for a small grant. This has help me to put some piece together. >>>>>>

    Reply
  15. Hamza Arshid Post author

    This Proposal writing would help only if you want to ask your own organization to start/fund some project but how about proposal we being contractor would prepare. an get the similar video but on the subject mentioned later??

    Reply
  16. ALL ABOUT CIVIL ENGINEERING Post author

    also check https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ukrr3G1peA

    Reply
  17. Kalpesh Chudasama Post author

    Hii please helpme my new ngo..gujrat village new child project please donate my ngo..work..my ngo..child right ..topic

    Reply
  18. Ms. Gin-Gin Post author

    Love the way you make it so understandable. You broke it down and went straight to root and source of it all. Thank you. This is also perfect for a refresher.

    Reply
  19. T Rudge Post author

    this is great – by far the best breakdown I've seen online, thank you so much very greatful

    Reply
  20. StartUpInACar Post author

    Damn I had no idea a proposal was so in depth lol. I thought it was just.. yeah here's what it's gonna cost and here's what you get. make a lot of sense though.

    Reply
  21. houtan ghaffari Post author

    I learnt a lot. thank you very much. not a second wasted.

    Reply
  22. G. Mancus Post author

    Nice job. One comment on SMART objective: Achievable and Realistic basically mean the same. Good alternatives for the "A" in the acronym can be: Agreed-upon (by top management) or Aligned (with company stategy).

    Reply
  23. VA Post author

    Quick question. Is it ok to start with 'problem'? won't it sound like a negative start? Would it not be better to start with vision and then come to the topic which talks about what's stopping it from happening?

    Reply
  24. Tre Post author

    Great, do you have a video on how to write a statement of work (SOW) ?

    Reply
  25. rogers bamulinde Post author

    thanks a lot, this i believe will incredibly improve on my skills and opportunity

    Reply
  26. Pretty Shooter B Post author

    Will this work for real estate development

    Reply
  27. Tanish Bajaj Post author

    Can I use this to send a science project's idea?

    Reply
  28. samypm08 Post author

    it coulb be used this like a kick off?

    Reply
  29. Jordie Douglas Post author

    This bloke is about as exciting as a circumcision

    Reply
  30. Mistah FTM 7394 Post author

    Another alogrithim fail, I already written business proposal. Ppl want to see myself poor while they siphon my ip. Im so angry.

    Reply
  31. Sahand Yazdani Post author

    Fine old school video. Would someone tell me more about lobbying and what it exactly means in an example?

    Reply
  32. Scott Simpson Post author

    Such a great video, Im learning how to do a wellness project proposal for first nations.

    Reply
  33. James Parker Post author

    Lutherangrants/org helped me out .They sent me a grant of $55,000 to finance my project.

    Reply
  34. Edwin F Post author

    Swapped to this because the first woman's voice was annoying as fuck

    Reply
  35. GUAVA BEAN Post author

    If anyone wants to learn about working remotely or join a fun & active community, check out www.guavabean.com! We love helping freelancers & digital nomads find their dream jobs. 💕

    Reply
  36. Influence Ehimen Post author

    I am so happy .I just got a check of $46,000 from lutherangrants org for the grant i applied for .

    Reply
  37. Magnus Hodge Post author

    With the help of lutherangrants 'org i received a grant of $45,000 to finance my project.

    Reply
  38. rk jayaram Post author

    It is not good starting a proposal with ' problems '

    Reply
  39. sean montague Post author

    Honestly you spent most of your time explaining the importance of a good proposal instead of explaining in detail how to write it. The video is misleading and should be called the importance of a business proposal.

    Reply
  40. Mohamed Farah Post author

    Thank you very much. It was actually very helpful lessons.

    Reply
  41. newphillygirl Post author

    Should this be written before the business plan? It seems like it informs some of the planning decisions.

    Reply
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  43. si sal Post author

    I need a project example ,,, someone help me … I just need something to work with so I can start doing the project .

    Reply
  44. Guldaraz Khan Post author

    can any one help me about the hospital management system in java

    Reply
  45. solongsucka Post author

    The more I see these videos, the more it is evident to me that you guys have NEVER run a real project. You are just theoretical. You cannot overstate a problem or "make it bleak". You have stakeholders who will not accept that and they are usually in the trenches and KNOW the problems. You have to be accurate in the statement.

    Reply
  46. J Sasi Post author

    Thank you so so much now I know how to arrange the main components to a Research Proposal

    Reply
  47. Alejandra Fernandez Post author

    Thank you so much! You made it so easy for me to understand.

    Reply

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