A very important lesson I have learned over the years is that one should never write any type of proposal document from scratch. It’s way too hard and just not necessary anymore. This is something I learned the hard way many years ago, after slaving away to write my first few proposals from a blank page. Since then, I have written thousands of business documents, including hundreds of proposals for many different situations without ever having to work from scratch.
In fact, the most effective way to develop a proposal is to work from a model that has already been created for another proposal submission situation. It also doesn’t need to be for the exact same situation; as long as it is along similar lines. I know from my various writing-related websites that there are five main proposal types that people seek help with online: grant proposals, business proposals, technical proposals, project proposals and sales proposals. Nevertheless, it turns out that it doesn’t matter very much (if at all) what type of proposal you are writing; the approach and basic structure will be very similar, if not identical.
The important thing is to be able to use the approach and structure of the sample template that you work with as your guide for the new proposal that you need to draft. Using an already-proven template that matches your situation as closely as possible can have numerous benefits as follow:
• You will save significant time by not having to start from scratch.
• The template will act as a “checklist” to ensure you cover everything.
• A template will tend to stimulate your thinking and give you new ideas.
• You will know you are using an approach already used successfully by others.
In the end, using a previously developed proposal should give you a result that is even better than the model from which you are working.
Below is a link to a free sample of a typical business proposal template, the original version of which was developed by my favorite proposal tools website. Working with their original model, I then made a few of my own improvements; nothing major, just some minor refinements. If you click on the following link you will be able to download the proposal template sample (PDF) into Adobe Reader:
BEFORE you download the sample template, please take note that this is just one sample proposal for one typical business situation. In reality, there are scores of different situations for which templates are available. For best results, you should always try to find a proposal template that is as similar as possible for your particular situation.
By the way, if you don’t have Adobe Reader installed, you can download it for free right here:
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