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Blog – Pens Down2021-02-13T08:20:53-05:00

Parenting and Proposal Parallels

Note from the editor: This is a reprint of an article originally from Spring 2011 Executive Summary Ezine, written by past NCA board member Alexander Brown (2005 - 2015). This article may be 10 years (!) old, but as the mother of a young child every word here still rings true in 2021: “My life revolves around my girls” is a mantra I adhere to. Each morning I wake up happy that I have another chance to enrich their lives while praying not to screw up like I did yesterday. I have to explain repeatedly why the golden arches are not a place where we go often, even if it is cheap and those fries are delicious. I also try to stop them from watching too much TV because my parents drilled into my head that it would rot the brain. Each day I worry about what they may see,

By |March 4th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|0 Comments

Three Surprising Things I’ve Learned as a Student of Proposal Writing

By |February 25th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

If you're a student of proposal writing, check out APMP-NCA's Graduate Pathway Program. There are valuable opportunities to expand your education, network with peers and gain insight from proposal mentors along the way. For more information on this program, please email Originally published February 2020 As a student of proposal writing rather than an active member of the field, it does feel presumptuous to be writing about the topic with a mere two semesters

5 reasons Why I’m Signing Up For the Mentor-Protégé Program

By |February 19th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

I remember my first day working in Proposals - it was just me and one other person and we split all the work 50/50. Together, we made up the proposal manager, proposal coordinator, capture manager, editor, graphics artist, and every other role needed in between to create our finished masterpiece of a proposal.  We were both in our first role when it came to responding to RFP’s, and thinking back, how we could’ve used a

The Complete Newbie’s Guide to a Career in Proposal Writing

By |February 11th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

The Complete Newbie’s Guide to a Career in Proposal Writing Originally published on Aug 13, 2019 by KSI , Inc. So, you’re about to start proposal writing for the first time. Maybe you’re transitioning careers, or maybe you’re a recent college graduate, stepping into government contracting culture for the very first time. Either way, congratulations are in order. Way to go! You’re about to start a new career in an exciting and challenging field. A

APMP’s 2021 Virtual Capture and Business Development Conference (CBDC) Delivers Crowd-sourced Training Topics and Networking Opportunities for a Global Audience

By |February 4th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

FOMO is real if you didn’t attend CBDC last week… It was THAT good, for those of us wanting to begin the new year with a renewed focus on capture and business development excellence. However, if you missed out—fear not. Here, we break down the highlights and key takeaways from CBDC and give you a chance to weigh in on what you want to see from your local APMP NCA chapter.  This year’s all-virtual conference

Step Back In Time – A look back at the Executive Summary

By |January 21st, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

A huge thank you to all of our readers, new and old, who stay up to date with our weekly blog, Pens Down - we look forward to sharing so much more the rest of the year! A look back at The Executive Summary It’s been a few weeks since we’ve started this new weekly format, and I thought it would be fitting to take a look back at our humble beginnings as a bi-monthly

Three Ways Proposals Are Like Building a House

By |January 14th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

Three Ways Proposals Are Like Building a House Happy 2021! After a challenging and rocky 2020, I know so many of us are looking forward to new beginnings and a smoother year in 2021. I’m definitely no exception. In fact, my fiancé Kevin and I are in the process of building our dream home. But it wasn’t something we set out last year planning to do—we just kind of—fell into it.  As you know, safe,

I’ll Get In Shape After This Proposal, and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves

By |January 7th, 2021|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

I’ll Get In Shape After This Proposal, and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves The Number 1 Lie The number 1 lie the general population tells themselves at the beginning of each new year: This year I will finally get in shape. I’m going to be a new person starting January 1!  The number 1 lie people like us tell ourselves is: I’ll get in shape as soon as this proposal is over! Staying healthy during

Welcome to Our Weekly blog, Pens Down!

By |December 31st, 2020|Categories: Blog, Featured Article|

New Year, New Universe - Working and Living in a Distanced World Maybe not everyone, but I’d say a good majority of us would agree that 2020 was just not the best year. There are silver linings to find for sure, such as our advanced 21st century technology that saved the day and let a huge swath of the population keep working while also safely quarantined. Not just our profession, but the national workforce was

Ten Tips for Optimizing Virtual Proposal Reviews

By |June 19th, 2020|Categories: eZine, Featured Article|

Working from home and social distancing present obvious obstacles to conducting in-person proposal reviews during the ongoing public health crisis. While conducting virtual proposal reviews was a common practice prior to the pandemic, today’s remote workplace introduces challenges that proposal managers must address to conduct effective reviews. Whether you’re conducting virtual proposal reviews for the first time or you’re planning your initial review in the “new normal” virtual workplace, this article provides 10 tips to

From the Desk of the Vice President

By |June 19th, 2020|Categories: eZine, From the Desk of the Vice President|

On Friday March 13th, I grabbed my bag and walked out of my Alexandria, VA office. I haven't been back since, and if we're being honest, I don't know if I ever want to. That's not to say that I don't want to keep working--not at all. In the time I've been working from home, I think I've been more productive than I have in years. In between developing six proposals over two months and

FREE Coronavirus Response Icons

By |June 19th, 2020|Categories: Ask the Graphics Guru, eZine|

I’m doing something different this time (as is everyone in the world). Rather than write my standard article, I’m sharing some of my PowerPoint coronavirus response and healthcare icons and symbols. My hope is twofold: Empower people like you to educate others about pandemic response best practices. These royalty free images can be used in any way you choose. Use them in proposals, infographics, presentations, learning materials, and other media. You can also share this

Past eZine Issues, prior to June 2018, are available in the Body of Knowledge as PDFs.  Temporarily, the files are here.

Special Thanks To . . .

Executive Summary e-Zine Chair

Candy Jenkins, CP APMP, PMP


Rebecca Link,
APMP-NCA President

General Dynamics Information Technology

Steve Skeldon,
APMP-NCA Vice President


Technical Support

Neal Levene, CPP APMP, PMP,
APMP-NCA Technology Chair

Siemens Government Technologies, Inc.


P.O. Box 711
Arlington, VA 22216-0711

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Proposal Management Professionals
National Capital Area Chapter

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