Veterans Business Resources

a portal for all Veterans and SDV Small Business Owners

2012 National Veterans Conference; the Secretary Speaks

VBR, this year’s National Veterans Conference is in the books – stick a fork in it, it is done.  I have heard mixed reviews about this year’s conference.  Some flattering comments and some not so flattering comments.  Regardless of where you come down on the conference, one thing is for sure, news was made and communicated to the attendees.

During the Dining with Decision Makers Plenary Luncheon and Awards Ceremony, Mr. Eric Shinseki, Secretary, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs made some potentially powerful statements about SDVOSBs and VOSBs contracting with the VA.  According to the General, not only will VA honor and obey P.L. 109-461, but this is how they will honor it:

  1. All potential awards not going to SDVOSBs or VOSBs must be reviewed and signed off by a senior executive before award is made.
  2. All potential Federal Supply Schedule awards not going to the same group must likewise be reviewed and signed off by a senior executive.
  3. The VIP Verification process will be and has been simplified.  There is now bi-annual re-verification of the VIP database and
  4. The VA Mentor Protégé Program has expanded from 25 to 50 agreements.

Mr. Shinseki actually made more declarative statements about the VA’s interactions with the Veteran business community, but these are 4 points that deserve special mention and attention.  These announcements can be game changers!  Or, they could just be more “Double Talk.”  What do you think?

 

See you on the high ground! 

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Filed under: Government Contracting, Leadership, Registrations & Certifications, Veterans Affairs, Woods Consulting Group, ,

Double Talk and P.L. 109-461

We are a wake up from the 8th Annual National Veterans Small Business Conference and Expo in Detroit.  While I am admittedly excited about attending the conference again this year, I am also not interested in more “double talk” from the very organization that is, because we are. 

My American Heritage Dictionary defines “double talk” as ambiguous or evasive language.  In the case of the VA’s position on P.L. 109-461, our use of the phrase “double talk” is most appropriate.  For those of us new to Government Contracting, P. L. 109-461 is the Veterans Benefits, Health Care, and Information Technology Act of 2006, which gives priority in contracting with the VA to SDVOSBs and VOSBs.

Michael Franks, the Grammy award winning lyrical genius describes “Double Talk” like this.  Every time I asked you to be truthful you lied | And when I lost my temper you cried | Crocodile tears and spoke double talk | It’s the same old alibis and stories again | All you ever give me is double talk.  You’re so jive – sometimes I think your brain was mislaid | You’ve broken every promise you made | You ought to see a doctor for double talk.   

If the very organization that is, because we are refuses to honor and obey P.L. 109-461 and makes it increasingly difficult to get our businesses verified, how are we to compete successfully for contract awards?  Hundreds, if not thousands of Veterans are losing business and many others have gone out of business because of the ineptitude in which the VIP program is managed and administered.  There has to be a better solution.  What are your thoughts?

 

See you on the high ground!  

 

Filed under: Ethics, Government Contracting, Leadership, Registrations & Certifications, Veterans Affairs, Woods Consulting Group, , , , , ,

Deliverables from the National Veterans Conference

This time next week, many of us will be preparing to leave home en route to Detroit, others of us will already be there.  We’ve waited a full year for the National Veterans Conference and its almost here again!  Can you feel the excitement and the anticipation?  I’m ready to get started, how about you?

I’ve heard some people describe their attendance of the National Veterans Conference as old school week, a class reunion of sorts.  There is little doubt that many old friendships will be renewed and comrades from duty assignments long past will appear in the sea of conventioneers attending the conference next week.  I’m equally confident that many war and sports stories will also be told and retold during the week.

While everything just described can be wonderfully enjoyable experiences, they are not among the primary reasons we’ve chosen to once again attend the National Veterans Conference.  There are serious business issues that must be addressed and worked out so Veterans with Veteran-Owned Small Businesses can have resolution as we leave Detroit, go back home and continue to build and grow our businesses.

Among the top issues conveyed to me are; 1. The VA’s unwillingness to honor and support PL 109-461, the Veterans Benefits, Health Care, and Information Technology Act of 2006, which gives priority to VOSBs in contracting with the VA, 2.  The seeming inability to register in the VIP database in a reasonable period of time and 3. The amount and type information requested for registration and verification.  The current process appears to be very subjective.

What are the Deliverables from the National Veterans Conference?  Let us know your thoughts.

 

See you on the high ground!

Filed under: Government Contracting, Networking, Registrations & Certifications, Support Our Troops, Veterans Affairs, Woods Consulting Group, , , , , ,

Memorial Day; after the Remembrances

Today we celebrate the rich history of selfless service to the nation by all the men and women that have laid down their lives to ensure our freedoms.  That is a debt of gratitude we can never truly repay, but we owe no less to the families of those heroes and she roes that made all our todays and tomorrows possible.

We have a generation of young Veterans returning from combat in foreign lands on foreign battlefields.  Many, if not most have been scarred for life, either physically or psychologically.  Many are returning to broken, foreclosed homes and staggering unemployment.  They are returning to a public and to a country they have spent the better part of the last 10 years making safe from terrorism.

The world that on this day is so very thankful for their service, but can’t seem to understand the value or relevance of the skill sets developed during that service.  How on earth is that possible?  How is it that a 21 year old that lead a squad or platoon of men into COMBAT can’t lead a group of employees at your company?

Will we just fire up the grills, eat way too much, settle in to watch the basketball game tonight and forget about who and what made it possible for us to enjoy those pleasures?  Or, will we redouble our efforts to find a real and tangible way to show our immense gratitude and appreciation for those who serve.  Hire a Veteran; it’s your civic and patriotic duty.

 

 

See you on the high ground!

 

 

Filed under: Government Contracting, Support Our Troops, Veterans Affairs, Woods Consulting Group, , , , , ,