Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Guest Columnist: Pivoting to success in the government marketplace

Gloria Larkin is President of TargetGov and a national business development expert in the government markets. She is an experienced speaker and trainer, and has authored one book (The Basic Guide to Government Contracting) and hundreds of federal contracting articles in print and online. (Submitted photo)

When the economic future seems stormy for small businesses, pivoting your business model  to sell services or products to the Maryland State Government or the Federal Government and all of the related agencies can be a viable and profitable alternative marketplace for Maryland business owners. You will want to consider this strategic move if you are ready to adjust your focus, evolve your services or products, continue to educate yourself and energize your business growth.

The Art of the Business Pivot

When a business pivots, it changes some aspect of its core focus, services or products to adapt to market changes, better meet customer demands or plan for accelerated growth. As our national and local business environment adjusts to life with the Covid19 endemic, inflation concerns and supply chain adjustments, most growing entrepreneurs look for the hidden opportunities or will now consider business customers that they had not considered in the past. This pivot, or change of direction, may happen quickly or slowly, depending on the business growth goals and desire for the timing of results.

(Re)Focus

Now is an ideal time to pivot or refocus to include the state or federal government agencies as potential customers for your services and products. Government entities have a mandate to do business with small businesses to support the local economy, and this market has opened the door to hundreds of millions of dollars in contracts for those small businesses willing to embrace the government purchase processes.

Evolve to Meet Market Needs

Yes, governments purchase virtually all types of services and products, however it is important to understand these new target customers and their specific needs. Every entity has a main mission to serve citizens. For instance, the Maryland Department of Transportation states that it “…is a customer-driven leader that delivers safe, sustainable, intelligent, and exceptional transportation solutions in order to connect our customers to life’s opportunities…” The Federal Department of Health and Human Services mission is “…to enhance the health and well being of all Americans by fostering effective health and human services and by fostering sound, sustained advances in the sciences, underlying medicine, public health and social services.” In order to have the best chance of winning bids, you want to determine how your service or products fit into and support that specific customer needs.

(Re)Educate

If you are interested in growing your business, you are most likely in a constant state of learning, improving and adapting. Tackling the government as a potential customer continues that learning process, and a huge advantage is that there are many no-cost resources provided for small businesses to enter this market to help you learn what the new government customers need, when they need it, how they buy, how to bid on the contracts, and how to successfully perform or deliver on those contracts. The resources in Maryland include eMaryland Marketplace Advantage (eMMA) at https://emma.maryland.gov and the Procurement Technical Assistance Centers at https://www.mdptac.org.

(Re)Energize

Set the stage for your business growth no matter what the economy by exploring the government contracting market. Use the no-cost resources mentioned above to start the process, and reach out to the TargetGov experts at FAST@TargetGov.com for a complimentary discussion if you have any other questions.

about the author
Gloria Larkin is President of TargetGov and a national business development expert in the government markets. She is an experienced speaker and trainer, and has authored one book (The Basic Guide to Government Contracting) and hundreds of federal contracting articles in print and online.

 

Minority Business/Expanding Opportunities cover

Expanding Opportunities

This article is featured in the 2022 edition of The Daily Record’s Expanding Opportunities Resource Guide for Small, Minority and Women Businesses that was published on Sept. 23. Published in conjunction with the Governor’s Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs, Expanding Opportunities explores diversity, entrepreneurship and innovation in Maryland’s small business community. Read more from Expanding Opportunities or read the digital edition.


To purchase a reprint of this article, contact reprints@thedailyrecord.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*