Submit an RFP

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Request for Proposals for Professional Conference Speakers

To submit a “Request for Proposal” Application:

Request for Proposals have closed.

I. Purpose:

The purpose of this Request for Proposals (RFP) is to solicit proposals for professional conference speakers for the upcoming Business Women’s Forum, sponsored and co-hosted by the Carlisle Area Chamber of Commerce, Harrisburg Regional Chamber & CREDC, and the West Shore Chamber of Commerce.

Conference speakers must be willing to provide their services pro bono public (without expectation of payment) for the good of professional women and in support of the goals and objectives of the Business Women’s Forum. Presenters selected through this proposal process can expect a wide range of exposure before conference attendees and are welcome to attend all conference activities, including meals, free of charge on the day of the event.

II. Business Women’s Forum Mission:

Business Women’s Forum is a Chamber of Commerce collaboration that promotes, inspires, and empowers women in business through professional development and relationship building.

III. Background:

The Business Women’s Forum event expects conference attendance of approximately 400 attendees, the majority of whom participate for the professional development workshops and networking opportunities. Attendees represent a variety of professional industries; i.e. finance, healthcare, sales, and education to name a few and most hold middle management or executive level positions within companies or are entrepreneurs.

The 2017 Business Women’s Forum will be held at Messiah College at the Calvin and Janet High Center for Worship and Performing Arts on Wednesday, May 23, 2018. The atmosphere will be one of fun and learning in a business casual environment, with numerous opportunities for professional development and networking. The Business Women’s Forum will feature a variety of learning formats, including concurrent breakout sessions, a general session keynote address, and an exhibitor area featuring event sponsors and local companies seeking to do business with professional women.

IV. General Information:

  1. RFPs are due by email no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, February 9, 2018. Proposals should be submitted online or emailed directly to with the subject line: RFP – BWF Speaker.
  2. Proposals will only be accepted from members of a Chamber of Commerce – this can be any Chamber of Commerce.
  3. Presenters may submit as many proposals as they like, but each topic must be submitted separately. The Program Committee evaluating the RFPs groups submissions by topic during the selection process and failure to submit topics separately will disqualify your proposal.
  4. Proposals submitted by the due date will become property of the Business Women’s Forum and will not be returned. Proposals received after the due date will not be considered.
  5. All presenters who made proposals will be notified of the results of this solicitation. It is expected that if you are selected as a professional presenter, you will honor your commitment to speak at our event.
  6. Business Women’s Forum breakout sessions and speaking opportunities are available as follows. Presenters may submit proposals for any or all of the services requested, by submitting separate RFPs.
  • Breakout Session Presenter; 45 minutes in length, intended audience 50 – 100 conference attendees.

V. Specific Proposal Instructions

Proposals for conference presenters should include the following information in writing in the same order as it appears on the Proposal Submission Form.

  1. A completed Proposal Submission Form including your full name, title, and company (as applicable), mailing address, phone number with area code, fax number, and email address. Including Social Media Account Names for BWF to promote and follow.
  2. Presentation/Session/Workshop Information.
    1. State the proposed title of your presentation, session, or workshop. Business Women’s Forum reserves the right to suggest changes in the proposed session and to edit the session title if your proposal is accepted.
    2. In one hundred and twenty (120) words or less, describe your proposed topic for your presentation.
    3. State at least three (3) Learning Objectives for your proposed presentation/session/workshop. Each objective should specifically indicate the results and outcomes you seek in terms of participant’s knowledge, skills, and behavior. For each objective, use the format: “After participating in this workshop, participants will be able to….”
    4. State the format for the proposed presentation/session/workshop.
      i. Lecture
      ii. Panel Presentation
      iii. Group Discussion (presenter and audience interact and discuss various points of a given topic)
      iv. Other. Please specify.
    5. Handouts. Describe the handouts, if any, or other materials, if any, you will provide to support your proposed presentation/session/workshop. Conference presenters are strongly encouraged to provide detailed handouts for attendees.
  3. Describe your AV requirements. Please note: each breakout session will be equipped with a laptop computer, projector, and screen and presenters will have a microphone available. Additional AV, including wireless lavaliere must be noted on your proposal and may be made available through a small fee to the presenter.
  4. Demonstration of Presenter Ability. Provide evaluation results from a past presentation or a link or video attachment of you presenting that demonstrates your style and ability
  5. Biographical Paragraph, Headshot, and Logo of Speaker. In fifty (50) words of less, describe your background and expertise which qualifies you as an expert in your subject presentation. Available headshots and company logo must be sent as well. This description may appear in the promotional materials and will be used to introduce selected speakers on the day of the Business Women’s Forum event.
  6. Professional References. Provide the name, addresses, telephone numbers and/or email addresses of three (3) references, specifying the context in which the references know you and are familiar with your skills as a workshop presenter or speaker.
  7. Social Media Teasers. Provide 3-4 teaser posts to be used on all our social media outlets to promote your session and create buzz about BWF in total. Two (2) of the teaser posts must include different pictures.
  8. Promotional Video. If chosen as a presenter, you will provide a 20-30 second video describing your presentation and inviting guests to attend. This video is meant to be lighthearted, but still professional. Videos may be filmed on a cell Page 4 of 6 phone. If the quality of the provided video is low, a member of the marketing committee with schedule a time with you to assist in filming your video. Once the video is posted on the BWF Facebook page, you are encouraged to share it on your own page.
  9. Co-Presenter/s Information. If co-presenter/s are being proposed for your presentation, please provide their name/s, mailing addresses/es, phone number/s, fax number/s, and email address/es as well as the same information required in the specific Proposal Submission Form, items E, F, G, and H.

On behalf of the Business Women’s Forum Program Committee, thank you for taking the time to submit a proposal.

VI. General Observations

  1. Attendees prefer speakers to provide handouts.
  1. Time management for your topic is important. When speakers try to cram too much into their sessions and can’t complete within the time allotted, attendees indicate on the forms that they feel like they missed out on something.
  1. Attendees want to hear a presentation, not someone who just stands in front of the room and reads from a slide show.
  1. Try to bring something new to the table. For example, there have been many work-life balance topics in the past and attendees at this point are looking for more than an elementary introduction.
  2. Attendees want to be educated or informed. When a presentation is heavily focused on marketing a service or product, they complain on the evaluation forms.

VII. Suggested Presentation Topics

  1. Leadership
  2. Marketing
  3. Personal Development

To submit a “Request for Proposal” Application:

Request for Proposals have closed.

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