Charles Campion, the London Evening Standard’s quite wonderful restaurant critic, has just announced the winners of his “Great Menu Outrage” competition. Top of the list:
“Cured carpaccio and tartare of red tuna, spring onions marinated in sesame seed oil, tomato tartare with vanilla, yoghurt and Sichuan pepper ice cream”
“Fresh calamari linguini ‘blanco y negro’, black paella paint, candied garlic and lemony mayonnaise sponge”
“Cinnamon rubbed pork tenderloin cooked at low heat, pureed leeks, mangosteen, wasabi and rose froth, wild rocket and salty caramel”
A similar challenge applies for proposal teams as they present their “menus” of options to the customer. How much detail do we include? Too little, we get scored down. Too much, we bore the readers – and get scored down. There’s the eternal challenge – a great proposal should be complete, comprehensive, yet concise.
As ever, getting the account manager to ask the buyer up front – “how long are you expecting our proposal to be”, or “picture the ideal proposal for us” – is no bad thing. And as a default to aim for, the praise one team I worked with recently garnered from a client sums up the ideal outcome:
“Your proposal was half the length of your competitor’s, but said twice as much.”