Mentors and and their protégés from across the metro Atlanta region received instruction today (Aug. 9, 2012) on how contract negotiations are conducted in the government marketplace. The three-hour workshop was conducted by representatives of The Contracting Education Academy at Georgia Tech.
Participants in the workshop were the 2012-2013 mentor-protégé class of the Georgia Mentor Protégé Connection (GMPC). The GMPC is a business development partnership between the State of Georgia and the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Enterprise Innovation Institute, administered by the Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council (GMSDC).
The August 9th interactive training session, entitled “Government Contract Negotiations,” was led by The Academy’s program manager Donna Bertrand and contracting services group manager Chuck Schadl. They were assisted by Georgia Tech’s Ieasha Jones who handled all the logistics for the event. The training was conducted as the latest in a series of monthly workshops sponsored by the GMPC.
Today’s presentation consisted of an excerpt from the 10-day Defense Acquisition University (DAU) course known as CON 120 – Mission-Focused Contracting. Mission-Focused Contracting is the capstone course for Level I contracting professionals, engaging participants in the entire acquisition process. The “Government Contract Negotiation” training excerpt covers how actual negotiations are conducted in a post-award contracting scenario.
The major objective of today’s workshop, states Ms. Bertrand, is to help firms, both large and small, be “better prepared to develop strategies for their contract negotiations with government agencies.”
She explained that negotiations skills are essential to reaching success in the marketplace as well as being helpful in everyday life. “Each of us engages in negotiations practically every day of our lives – whether we realize it or not. It starts in childhood when your parent issues a firm ‘No!’ and you respond with “Uhh, Mom ….’ This is when you begin to learn what works and what doesn’t work. That’s why, in any negotiation, we say ‘Aim High!’”
Attendees at The Academy’s workshop participated in mock contract negotiations, patterned after real-life government negotiations. Some of the participants played the role of either government negotiators or as members of a contractor’s negotiation team. Others in attendance played the role of observers who later analyzed and reported on the negotiations techniques they witnessed.
Prior to the workshop, The Academy provided relevant pre-course reading material to participants that may be found at http://contractingacademy.gatech.edu/?p=544. The Academy also recommended that workshop attendees take an on-line DAU course to learn more about negotiations. It can be found at http://icatalog.dau.mil/onlinecatalog/courses.aspx?crs_id=469.
The full CON 120 course, taught on the Atlanta campus of the Georgia Institute of Technology, carries with it 8.8 Continuous Education Units and 88 Continuous Learning Points, both granted by DAU. In addition, Georgia Tech grants 6.65 Continous Education Units for the CON 120 class. The Academy is an official DAU equivalency training provider.
For more information about The Contracting Education Academy at Georgia Tech, please visit http://www.contractingacademy.gatech.edu. For registration details on The Academy’s CON 120 course, please visit http://www.pe.gatech.edu/courses/con-120-mission-focused-contracting.
Participants in the 2012-2013 Georgia Mentor Protégé Connection (GMPC):
|Citizens Trust Bank||Infinity Technology Consulting, Inc.|
|Delta Air LInes, Inc||VDART, Inc.|
|Ernst & Young||ONYX ms Group|
|Georgia Power, A Southern Company||RA Smith Asphalt Paving Contractors, Inc|
|Metro Atlanta Utility Contractors, Inc|
|Hardin Construction Company, LLC||SoCo Contracting Company|
|Heery International||Hygun Group, Inc.|
|JE Dunn||Eagle Universal Services, Inc.|
|Johnson Control, Inc.||Remediation Group|
|Lockheed Martin Aeronautics||ADG Enterprises, Inc.|
|PNC Bank||Arke Systems, LLC|
|Skanska USA Building, Inc.||Willmer Engineering, Inc.|
|SunTrust Bank||Global Resource Management, Inc.|
|The Coca-Cola Company||TI Asset Management, Inc.|
|The Home Depot||SAWTST, LLC|
|The North Highland Company||CyQuest Business Solutions, Inc.|
|Turner Construction||Technical Services Audio Visual (TSAV)|
|United Parcel Service||Display America|
|Wells Fargo||Clinical Resources, LLC|