I received a series of emails from a couple of GovWin members who believe that financial influence plays a powerful role in whether or not small businesses can secure a government contract.
In response to the invite to our Virtual Roundtable, “Securing Government Contracts: Lessons Learned from Successful SMBs,” one member wrote:
It may be true that a number of small and mid-sized businesses “struggle with operational processes and identifying the tactics necessary to be successful” in pursuing government contracts. However, I do not believe that is the major problem. Political influence goes a long way in deciding who will obtain government contracts and who will not. Unfortunately, political influence involves financial persuasion in many cases. Surely there are many honest, ethical, moral “tactics” that can be used to obtain government contracts. Many businesses seem to be willing to play the “financial influence game.”
This statement, of course, does not mean that everyone who receives a government contract has used financial influence.
However, this one member believes strongly that many small businesses who want to grow need to pay someone in order to obtain a substantial fee contract as a prime contractor. The payment takes the form of political influence through lobbying and other activities (some legal and some not).
So, what is the solution?
The GovWin member who wrote me said that is was important that “those who are perceived as not being successful are not necessarily incompetent, incapable business people. Nor are they lacking in their operational processes.”
In this member’s view, the problem is that more needs to be done to make the process fair for small business.
Do you agree? Please submit your thoughts to this post below.