Bid Manager, United Kingdom
When it comes to disrupting entire industries and building transformative customer experiences, you have to have an exceptional team that can build these products at pace.
Our team at gravity9 is just that; highly skilled, driven, passionate, and fun to work with.
We continue our Meet the gravity9’ers series with the introduction of: Allan Hudson!
What is your role at gravity9 (and what is your expertise)?
I am the Bid Manager at gravity9. My job is to find large corporate and public sector opportunities and write compelling tender proposals which convince the customer that gravity9 is the provider for their IT project.
For this you need to be a storyteller, a project manager, a researcher, and an excellent communicator, because everybody in your team possesses a piece of knowledge that can improve the answer, whether they know it or not.
What advice would you give to someone looking to excel in your line of work?
Know your customer.
The win I value most was not professional, it was a Persian cat! In 2012 I was looking for a new cat and my wife came across an advert from a cat breeder who had decided to give up her practice because of a family bereavement. The most valuable cats were available for a very low price to whoever could convince her that they could provide the best care for each cat.
Knowing that cat people love the individual personalities of their cats and think of them as members of the family, I wrote an e-mail to her from my existing cat referring to my wife and I as his pet humans. He explained what wonderful pets we were, always providing the best food, entertaining him with trinkets and providing lots of belly-rubs!
The e-mail was successful, and I now have an 11-year-old mute calico Persian called “Ripley”.
To me the essence of that story is relevant, no matter whether you are bidding for the right to provide an IT system, a security service, or a new recycling plant – you need to understand what your customer really wants and values.
What do you enjoy most about working at gravity9?
The passion and quality of my workmates. Bids have felt so supported and stress-free so far, because of the awesome contributions that have come from them.
Tell us about your hobbies and interests. What do you do in your spare time?
I’m Welsh and there are several Welsh stereotypes, all of which I conform to – rugby is more of a religion than a sport to me, and I’ve also been part of two Male Voice Choirs!
Travelling and discovering cultures is a passion which started when I discovered backpacking around the world in my 20s. I went on to work for the Foreign Office, then a consultancy, teaching people the cultural differences between China and the UK, so I ended up letting people pay me to travel.
I also love cooking, which came from working as a chef (to pay for university and travel) and trying to replicate some of the dishes I ate while travelling.
What would be your dream vacation?
Patagonia! It has one of the best national parks in the world to explore which includes the Andes Mountains with lakes, fjords, temperate rainforests, and glaciers in the west and deserts, tablelands, and steppes to the east.
I also want to see the unique South American/Welsh fusion culture, plus rugby, great food, gauchos, pumas, penguins, whales and the world’s largest parrot colony.
Who inspires you, and why?
Mike Massimino. What impressed me about him when I read his autobiography (Spaceman) was the normality of his background. He comes from a working-class neighbourhood in New York and became an astronaut through a combination of hard work and being the ultimate team player.
Despite his achievements he is very down to earth and the section where he describes making a mistake trying to fix stuck handrails and frozen bolts on the Hubble Telescope and not knowing for hours whether he could fix it is a great read.
What really grinds your gears (your pet peeve)?
Skimmed milk – it’s really water that’s lying about being milk!
What’s your favourite Quote?
I use this quote sometimes when I run bid improvement workshops. Bid Managers want to have as many reviews of our proposals as possible, and we are continuously trying to improve our bid until the last possible moment.
What’s your favourite book, movie, or TV series (and why do you love it)?
The “Milligan Memoirs Series” by Spike Milligan. It’s mostly about his war experiences and the pranks he pulled during that time. The reason that I love them so much is because they remind me of my grandfather’s stories during his service.
I also met him in a jazz pub in the 1980s and he told me the full versions of some of the stories including the one where he first met Harry Secombe and Peter Seller’s favourite prank. A comic genius and a lovely man.
I also have to mention the film “The Italian Job”. If you’ve ever owned a Mini, you’ll know why.
Visit our Careers page to find out about current vacancies at gravity9 and the opportunities for joining our global team and check out our Insights page for more “Meet the gravity9’ers” plus lots more team and tech discussion!
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