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On Thursday, October 27th Public Spend Forum welcomed Dan Ward to share stories about simple innovation from a 20+ year career at the US Air Force. In addition to great storytelling and noble attempts at humor, Dan offered specific strategies that you can use right away to solve on-job challenges and improve procurement outcomes.

One such strategy is trimming, and it increases value simply by taking things off the table. Got an important presentation to deliver, but worried that your PowerPoint deck is too long? Take a slide out and see if the message is still delivered. You’ll be surprised at how much of something you can remove while still preserving its integrity.

For a more practical example, consider a customer requirements document. When I was a Contracting Officer, I watched a program team expand a requirement for a simple luggage inspection table into a retrofitted, hydraulic-powered “divestiture solution” – in one hour! We trimmed it back to its essence and procured after-market food service tables that met all of the original requirements at a significant discount. And because they required no retrofitting, we got them into airports in a fraction of the customer’s original time frame.

In the inaugural episode of our “Impact in Five Minutes” video series, Dan tells you more about this technique and how you can implement it today. Check out the video and consider trimming your next requirements document, evaluation strategy, or PowerPoint presentation. Use the Trimming quick reference guide for help, which you can download below.

And for anyone interested in exploring a new world of micro-credentialing, you can earn a “Trimming badge” simply by writing a blog post about your experience with the technique and how it improved your intended outcome.

Thanks for reading,

-Frank McNally


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