Consultant Spotlight: Stephen Marchesani
Favorite part of being a consultant?
The freedom to work on lots of different programs with different people, coupled with the freedom to have more control over my work/life balance.
What is the secret to managing a successful proposal?
It all starts with patience. Patience in working with lots of dynamic, goal-oriented individuals within the framework of a tight schedule. The hardest, but most important aspect for me is being patient while people are discussing ideas and then seizing opportunities to focus them as their ideas coalesce.
Any tips for writing a winning proposal?
The whole goal for the government is to expedite review by establishing evaluation criteria. The key is to focus on what the government wants to evaluate versus what the organization wants to tell them.
Biggest proposal pet peeve?
The challenge of making any team I work with understand there’s a lot more that goes on after writing is submitted. Having the team accept that needs to be a part of the schedule.
Where was your last vacation and what was the highlight of the trip?
I went to Costa Rica last June. The difference in every day mentality and relaxation in Costa Rica was life-altering. It made me realize there’s more to life than work and money. In addition to that, the country was absolutely gorgeous in every possible way.
Do you have any hidden talents?
I’m a published author and, as often as possible, do woodworking as a hobby to keep me humbled and grounded. There’s no satisfaction like building something tangible.
If you could meet anyone in the world (dead or alive) who would it be and why?
This may sound strange, but Robin Williams. His career, movies, and the things he did during his career seemed to be parallel to things going on in my life at the same time. I would love to talk to him about how important humor is in dealing with the stress of the human condition. How it is a far more valuable tool than the credit it receives. He has used it to show love, distraction, silliness and caring. I find that a form of magic.