Medicaid on a Dime: Disciplined Business Development in a Downturn

I recently gave a webinar on this topic, which was sponsored by TMG Health. While they have the slides available (and so do we: go to they don’t contain all of my comments regarding each slide. So, in this and a series of subsequent posts, I will discuss how to improve business development.

The topic is particularly pertinent in a downturn – everyone is looking for more business. But these ideas are applicable in good times and bad.

Remember that our focus is on the health and human services sector. These ideas, though, should be generally applicable across a variety of industries.

Here, then, are the five keys to disciplined business development:

  1. Use a Process. Just having a process – moldering on the shelf – is useless. You have to apply it and improve it – every day – to derive the benefit of reliable, repeatable performance in business development.
  2. Pick Your Battles. Which opportunities are the right ones? It’s tempting to bid on everything, particularly when states release lots of RFPs. Unfortunately, that can quickly become a road to chaos.
  3. Lay a Solid Foundation. Your health plan needs to lay a solid foundation for the market opportunity – whether you are the incumbent for a rebid, or a new market entrant.
  4. Create a Compelling Story. Why is your solution better than any other the buyer might choose?
  5. Deliver a Fresh Approach. There is a lot of competition for these opportunities. And, state RFPs nearly always ask for bidders to propose innovative solutions to achieve their objectives of improved outcomes, better health status, and reduced costs. What do you have that is truly new and different from every other health plan?

In the subsequent posts, I will examine each of these.

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