AEC Marketeer Podcast | Episode 43: All Things A3 with Ann Leiner

AEC Marketeer explores marketing trends and answers your most pressing questions to help you thrive as an A/E/C Marketeer. In this episode, Ann digs into the A3 proposal, where it came from, what it is, and where it’s going.

SPILL THE INK PODCAST | Mastering proposal writing with the A3 format

In this episode of “Spill the Ink,” Ann and host Michelle Calcote King discuss how A3 proposal writing works, best practices and the challenges of adapting to the new process. They also delve into the ways the AEC industry is evolving and discuss what today's companies are looking for in exceptional RFP responses.

Further Reading

Transforming Design and Construction: A Framework for Change, William R. (Bill) Seed, Executive Editor

Presented in short chapter format, intended to encourage discussion, learning and experimentation individually or with a team. The Lean Construction Institute is an excellent resource for networking, training, continuing education and a deeper dive on specific aspects of Lean and Lean Construction.

New Trends to Revitalize Tired Proposals

By Ann M. Leiner, as published in SMPS

New Trends to Revitalize Tired Proposals, by Ann M. Leiner

By Ann M. Leiner, as published in AGC

Will Lean Thinking Revolutionize the Proposal Process? Lean Construction Requires A New Approach to Proposals

By Scott D. Butcher FSMPS CPSM, as published in Engineering News-Record

Speaking Engagements

Frequent presentation topics:

  • Remove the Waste! Using A3s for Proposals, Decision-Making and Project Documentation
  • Business Development vs. Marketing vs. Seller-Doers
  • Firm Differentiation – Are You Really Different From Your Competitors?
  • Answering the RFP Questions You Hate

Don’t see the topic you’re interested in?

Where We’ve Presented:

AIA Central Pennsylvania
AIA Philadelphia
Construction Leadership Network
Construction Owners Association of America – National
Construction Owners Association of America – Pennsylvania
Eastern Region of APPA – Leadership in Educational Facilities
Keystone Chapter of APPA – Leadership in Educational Facilities
Southern Region of APPA – Leadership in Educational Facilities
Society for Marketing Professional Services Arizona
Society for Marketing Professional Services Central Pennsylvania

Society for Marketing Professional Services Las Vegas
Society for Marketing Professional Services Maryland
Society for Marketing Professional Services New York
Society for Marketing Professional Services Northeast Regional Conference
Society for Marketing Professional Services Pittsburgh
Society for Marketing Professional Services Philadelphia
Society for Marketing Professional Services San Francisco
Society for Marketing Professional Services Seattle
Society for Marketing Professional Services Twin Cities
Society for Marketing Professional Services Wisconsin

What Attendees of our presentations are saying:

Thank you for telling us its okay to cut through boilerplate marketing language and approaches, it was so refreshing!


Just wanted to take a moment to tell you how well you did yesterday!  As usual you were a dynamic and capable presenter.


The A3 format is so applicable to everything we as business development and marketing professionals do, that even if you’re not ready to implement it in its entirety you can take pieces of it and elevate your current marketing materials and proposal presence to another level. 

- KELLIE COMINSKY | SAI Consulting Engineers

We have the A3 sample posted in our office. You offer wonderful inspiration.


I thought the presentation was great! The examples were super helpful! We’ve been wanting to use A3s as presentation leave behinds, so this was super helpful to learn tricks on how to condense content.

- MARISSA KOSIEC | Verdex Construction

You nailed it in the beginning…this one caught my eye and you delivered great value! Your knowledge and the content are really impressive and have me thinking about how we can continue to be more concise and visual in our presentation of information. Thank you!

- KATELIN ETOH | Ziger Snead Architects

You were relatable and well spoken, I loved the personal anecdotes.  I came back excited to share this with the principals of my firm and start building buy-in. 


I’m new to this field so was enthralled with the lean principles of A3 thinking. I was intrigued by the placemat format, definitely a plus. I had not seen that before and absolutely see its value. The way you executed the project profiles was also a great shift in my thinking. Thanks for taking the time to share your vision. Loved it!


Honestly this was the most effective and useful presentation I have attended through SMPS or any organization.  Your goal was to make it useful, well you exceeded your own goal. 


Thank you for your amazing presentation. I’m really excited to share some of these concepts with the rest of our team. We’ve recently started seeing requests for A3s and it’s been a topic of conversation in the marketing team. …

Plus – I love how concise your information was, and the examples that were included in the presentation.

Delta – It’s hard to think of one.

- KAT NORTH | Glumac

I really enjoyed your presentation today. I’m with the SMPS Seattle Chapter, and saw this program mentioned in one of our recent newsletters. I was very interested in the topic—interested enough that I joined the meeting today at 6:00 am Seattle time! Your talk opened my eyes to this way of presenting information and qualifications. I loved it!

- KATHRYN BOST | Stepherson Associates

I have to say that was the most rewarding professional workshop I think I’ve ever attended.  Ann was such a great presenter and this method is so fascinating.


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