Safety in the office

posted in: Safety 0


Leads 2 Business : office safety


‘It’s all fun and games, until someone looses an eye”


A hackneyed expression to be sure, but true. Nobody likes to think how something can go wrong; how people can be hurt in a situation; never mind plan against it. Where’s the fun in that? But even fewer people like dealing with these types of situations when they do occur. They are stressful at least and scary at worst. People’s health and safety is paramount when it comes down to it.


Extreme working environments tend to get the most buzz, when it comes to health and safety. Work environments where large machinery is used or people are working at heights or great depths or working with chemicals and extreme temperatures. Work environments that hiss and clang and are impressive to all of the senses. The average general office doesn’t usually spring to mind. However, the office cannot be left out. They say that the most accidents happen in the home or the most car accidents happen very close to home. Why? I think it’s because people let their guard down. They relax. Accidents happen, when we aren’t paying attention. Now I’m not an advocate for going around constantly wearing a hard hat doing risk assessment on the go. Come on. That isn’t realistic. But treating life like it isn’t going to happen to you; is a recipe for disaster.


Health and Safety in South Africa is legislated under the Health and Safety Act and basically tasks employers with ensuring the safety of their employees; and employees with the active prevention and reporting of potential dangerous situations. Offices must have sufficient fire exits in case of emergency evacuations. There must be a designated meeting area outside, to do a head count and ensure that everyone got out of the building. The office has fire extinguishers, that are regularly checked and maintained. The staff should know how to use them. Something about “pulling a tab, spraying and holding on”. There are staff that have basic first aid training, and a first aid box to deal with minor accidents. There’s security services; alarm systems, panic buttons and physical security guards. Employees have the responsibility to not only look out for themselves but also their colleagues and their employer as a whole. An employee will notice a problem (for example a shorting wall plug) before the employer and they must report it. Reporting faulty equipment as well as wiring and plumbing is essential in ensuring a safe working environment. The prompt and correct fixing of said problems is even more important. Employees must be vigilant with their own safety, as this ensures the safety of others. External doors must be closed at all times, preventing unknown persons from entering the premises. Those that smoke must make sure that their cigarette butts are completely extinguished to prevent any unnecessary and dangerous fires. Spills of any sort have to be mopped up to prevent slips and falls. If any glass gets broken, this must be swept up immediately. The correct and responsible use of equipment is paramount at all times, especially kitchen equipment. Anything that produces boiling water or scalding steam must be shown the due respect. No one wants to have to deal with blistered hands or worse. The new coffee machine sounds like ye ol’ steam locomotive when it gets going. The amount of pressurised steam in that thing, is quite unnerving. (They’ve been known to explode, you know that right?) There’s a level of common sense required when dealing with people’s safety. Common sense sometimes goes walkabout, and one silly decision can have far reaching consequences. I tend to refer to it as “The Stupid”. It’s a moment in time where a choice is made. “The Stupid” chooses short quick fixes over the time consuming, safer and ultimately smarter choice. “The Stupid” won’t have to worry about where the first aid kit is or how the fire extinguisher works, because it will inevitability be someone else who will have that responsibility, as “The Stupid” will be unconscious or on fire at that point.


People can be hurt or dead in a blink of an eye. The weird and varied ways people can be hurt or killed, is staggering and frankly, terrifying. No one can live their lives wrapped in bubble wrap, but showing a complete disregard for the safety of themselves and others is the ultimate in disrespect. You can’t go back. None of us can. We can control only so much, and that little we can control can go a long way in ensuring a safe and supportive work environment.

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Barriers to Business

Barriers to Business...

I barely notice loadshedding now. It’s generally two hours over the weekend. We’ve adapted. Food is prepared before, just in case. Every electronic device is fully charged in anticipation. We have books. Never underestimate the rejuvenating powers of a two hour nap. We have a Yorkie. We have outside. I have my camera. I barely notice any more. Consistency allows for adaptation and planning. For the inconsistent times; well, we carry on regardless. People complain about the loss to business and the inconvenience to individuals. True. On both counts. But neither is universal. If I see a business with its doors closed due to loadshedding, I also see businesses with their doors open. Usually, to the gentle hum of a generator. If you are in the generator business, good for you. I doubt you’re complaining about loadshedding, too much. People have taken on hybrid appliances, and gas and solar power. Businesses that supply those products; they can’t be complaining about loadshedding either. Anyone who preaches the evils of reliance on coal, and the saving graces of green technology. No complaining from them. Their point is made. You read articles of entire families having taken themselves off the grid. Individuals who haven’t taken on gas or solar power, tend to frequent those businesses that have. There’s still money being spent and money being made. So where’s the barrier?


I remember my first day at Daily Tenders. The power went out. The boss simply loaded us into his car, and drove to his house. Us newbies were trained up in the lounge, while Leighann, perched at the kitchen counter, typed out tenders on a monolithic laptop and whatever passed for the internet 10 years ago. Yes, the power being out was an inconvenience but us allowing that inconvenience to interrupt our responsibilities to our subscribers was our choice. Not a bad lesson learnt on my first day.


Barriers to business tend to come in two forms: External and internal. We have little or no control over the external barriers. The unforeseen problems. The disasters. The failures. The disappointments. The deaths. These manifest out of nowhere. Or they could’ve been brewing for awhile (Eskom, I’m looking at you). They are the things that happen, that make situations just a little bit harder. But we have all the control over the internal barriers: Our attitudes and perceptions of the problem. When the power goes out, do you close up shop or find a way to keep hussling? Problems are not to be adopted and taken home and raised like one of your own. So you can haul it out and have everyone coo “Ooo look how big it’s gotten!”. You solve it or you let it go. Barriers, impediments and disappointments are not unique. We all have them. Businesses all have them. Generally, they’re all the same. But like that damn DRESS (you know the one) our individual perception affects how we handle the situation. (That was a fascinating social experiment, if ever I saw one). Everyone looked at the same single dress, and said something different. And reacted differently.


A river sees a blockage, as interrupting its flow. But that’s how a dam is made. There are opportunities at every turn, if you choose to see them. Momentary inconveniences can lead to long term benefits. The barriers are not suddenly going to stop or go away. But they will be insurmountable, if we choose to see them as such.

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Definition of Value



Definition of Value


“Definition of Value”. Hmmm. Well, I’ll just go get a hammer and nail down a cloud, shall I? Good grief.

Value is subjective. They say that “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder”. Well, so is value. I’m sure there are many who would scoff at what I value, and I’m sure I have scoffed (although I’m thoroughly ashamed of doing so) at the values of others. What people hold dear isn’t to be taken lightly or mocked. Great things come from the most unlikeliest of places and reasonings. It’s like declaring a planet wide favourite colour and being surprised when nearly everyone shouts “Oi! Pink! Pink! That’s not my favourite colour. It clashes with my everything” etc and so forth.


Companies, staff and consumers all have their own set of values and principles and preferences that are placed on pedestals to be admired and dusted off every now and then, or maintained day to day in the dirt down on the ground. Companies set themselves goals and outlooks and set up internal cultures, in an effort to achieve what they deem important, what they admire, what they envy. It could be “success” (another flighty definition, if ever I saw one) comprised of growth or security or profit or respect and reliance from their customers or peers or competitors (or any combination thereof). Motivation can never be underestimated when in the pursuit of a dream. Staff merge their personal values and principles with those laid down by their employers. A symbiosis that hopefully, doesn’t require question or sacrifice. Consumers, hopefully, know what they want and what they are willing to pay for it. Quality or quantity. The short-term or long-term. The easy or the challenging. A clear idea of preference, and an understanding of why that preference, is one of the hardest aspects when making your choice.


One man’s trash, is another man’s treasure.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

Apple versus Android

Coke versus Pepsi

The Tortoise versus the Hare

Eskom versus a candle and matches


You get the point.


Basically, value is defined by what you are willing to give up. Trusting that you will be gaining. Altruism doesn’t really exist in the business world. There’s an exchange. I give something in exchange for something I feel is worth it. This can be anything as measurable and common as money to the rarer stuff of trust and loyalty. But this exchange rarely ends there. It’s always back to what we make of it. The more we put in, the more we get out. And the end results are just as wiley. Life, just like business, is not a guarantee. It’s hardwork and luck and a thousand little things that come together to make it or break it. Disappointment lurks at every corner, being egged on by Expectations. But when expectations are met or even exceeded. That’s a good feeling for all concerned.


What we value defines us. And what we are willing to sacrifice for our values, defines us further.


Abundance Acceptance Accessibility Accomplishment Accountability Accuracy Achievement Acknowledgement Activeness Adaptability Adoration Adroitness Advancement Adventure Affection Affluence Aggressiveness Agility Alertness Altruism Amazement Ambition Amusement Anticipation Appreciation Approachability Approval Art Articulacy Artistry Assertiveness Assurance Attentiveness Attractiveness Audacity Availability Awareness Awe Balance Beauty Being the best Belonging Benevolence Bliss Boldness Bravery Brilliance Buoyancy Calmness Camaraderie Candor Capability Care Carefulness Celebrity Certainty Challenge Change Charity Charm Chastity Cheerfulness Clarity Cleanliness Clear-mindedness Cleverness Closeness Comfort Commitment Community Compassion Competence Competition Completion Composure Concentration Confidence Conformity Congruency Connection Consciousness Conservation Consistency Contentment Continuity Contribution Control Conviction Conviviality Coolness Cooperation Cordiality Correctness Country Courage Courtesy Craftiness Creativity Credibility Cunning Curiosity Daring Decisiveness Decorum Deference Delight Dependability Depth Desire Determination Devotion Devoutness Dexterity Dignity Diligence Direction Directness Discipline Discovery Discretion Diversity Dominance Dreaming Drive Duty Dynamism Eagerness Ease Economy Ecstasy Education Effectiveness Efficiency Elation Elegance Empathy Encouragement Endurance Energy Enjoyment Entertainment Enthusiasm Environmentalism Ethics Euphoria Excellence Excitement Exhilaration Expectancy Expediency Experience Expertise Exploration Expressiveness Extravagance Extroversion Exuberance Fairness Faith Fame Family Fascination Fashion Fearlessness Ferocity Fidelity Fierceness Financial independence Firmness Fitness Flexibility Flow Fluency Focus Fortitude Frankness Freedom Friendliness Friendship Frugality Fun Gallantry Generosity Gentility Giving Grace Gratitude Gregariousness Growth Guidance Happiness Harmony Health Heart Helpfulness Heroism Holiness Honesty Honor Hopefulness Hospitality Humility Humor Hygiene Imagination Impact Impartiality Independence Individuality Industry Influence Ingenuity Inquisitiveness Insightfulness Inspiration Integrity Intellect Intelligence Intensity Intimacy Intrepidness Introspection Introversion Intuition Intuitiveness Inventiveness Investing Involvement Joy Judiciousness Justice Keenness Kindness Knowledge Leadership Learning Liberation Liberty Lightness Liveliness Logic Longevity Love Loyalty Majesty Making a difference Marriage Mastery Maturity Meaning Meekness Mellowness Meticulousness Mindfulness Modesty Motivation Mysteriousness Nature Neatness Nerve Noncomformity Obedience Open-mindedness Openness Optimism Order Organization Originality Outdoors Outlandishness Outrageousness Partnership Patience Passion Peace Perceptiveness Perfection Perkiness Perseverance Persistence Persuasiveness Philanthropy Piety Playfulness Pleasantness Pleasure Poise Polish Popularity Potency Power Practicality Pragmatism Precision Preparedness Presence Pride Privacy Proactivity Professionalism Prosperity Prudence Punctuality Purity Rationality Realism Reason Reasonableness Recognition Recreation Refinement Reflection Relaxation Reliability Relief Religiousness Reputation Resilience Resolution Resolve Resourcefulness Respect Responsibility Rest Restraint Reverence Richness Rigor Sacredness Sacrifice Sagacity Saintliness Sanguinity Satisfaction Science Security Self-control Selflessness Self-reliance Self-respect Sensitivity Sensuality Serenity Service Sexiness Sexuality Sharing Shrewdness Significance Silence Silliness Simplicity Sincerity Skillfulness Solidarity Solitude Sophistication Soundness Speed Spirit Spirituality Spontaneity Spunk Stability Status Stealth Stillness Strength Structure Success Support Supremacy Surprise Sympathy Synergy Teaching Teamwork Temperance Thankfulness Thoroughness Thoughtfulness Thrift Tidiness Timeliness Traditionalism Tranquility Transcendence Trust Trustworthiness Truth Understanding Unflappability Uniqueness Unity Usefulness Utility Valor Variety Victory Vigor Virtue Vision Vitality Vivacity Volunteering Warmheartedness Warmth Watchfulness Wealth Willfulness Willingness Winning Wisdom Wittiness Wonder Worthiness Youthfulness Zeal

Past. Present. Future.


What do you value?

And what’s it worth to you?

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Understanding Awards

Understanding Awards



The pendulum for researching tender awards swings from one extreme to the other. The only constant are the benefits. When researching tenders awards, you never know what you are going to get. It could be so simple and painless that you’re unsure if you’ve actually just worked on, confirmed and published a tender award. It could also be so teeth-gnashingly frustrating, that you would think you’d been charged with finding the Holy Grail. The cast of characters are vast and numerous, but tend to favour certain categories:


Quick and Painless: This category is populated by those that publish award information in the media (you would think that this is a given. But it’s not); who answer phones and are willing to answer questions; those who answer emails (regardless of the email content. Answer emails. That’s it). Basically, if you are willing to engage in a conversation and confirm or supply me with award information, this is your category. I thank you. My Department thanks you. Our subscribers thank you. Transparency in the tender process hard at work.


Not Quick and Definitely Not Painless: This category contains everyone else.


Every unanswered email, ever.


The “instant-hangup”. You know the one. You call, it rings, it’s picked up and then “Click”. A sub-category that involves me phoning back and remaining on hold indefinitely. This results in partial deafness in my right ear from listening to either a tinny Greenleaves on an endless loop or a wind instrument butchering of a ’80’s One Hit Wonder. I will turn that ringing phone into an instrument of torture until that Government employee crawls out from under their desk and answers the phone. Generally, this results in them realising that if they give me what I want; I will go away. Until next time. But let’s not burst their bubble.


The “Wrong Department”. I tend to end up at HR. Regardless of how I worded my request. When I’ve done the full circuit of synonyms for “tender” and am now on a first name basis with the woman in HR; I know it’s going to be a long day.


There’s the blatant “No”. I can respect these guys because at least they’re not wasting my time or theirs. But I do think “Dodgy” when this happens. Which I will concede is unfair. The construction industry is very competitive, and as we all know, information is very valuable. Not everyone likes their “business” to be spread all over the place. Of course not, why would any company in this day and age want other people (with money), to know about their services and how some people (also with money) trust them with it to do a job? Scandalous. Yes, I know. You main contractors and some consultants out there don’t want to be inundated with calls. I get it. I know. I sympathise. But I’m still going to call anyway. A sub-category of this group are the “No Internet presence” people. They don’t exist. At least not digitally anyways. They can not be found. It baffles me, how they do business at all?


The “Who are you and why do you want to know?” category can go either way. This category either just wants to be informed (I can admire this) or they are suspicious of us. I’m perfectly happy to explain myself and what L2B does, just short of submitting a DNA sample. This category is an opportunity as they either subscribe to us or give us the opportunity to explain that publishing their awarded company details on the L2B website, is the grownup version of “Na-na-nana-na!”.


The “Uber-suspicious” group is like trying to have a conversation with Gollum, protecting his Precious (insert bad Gollum impression here).

“Sir, I don’t want to take it from you. I just want to talk to you about it”

“Filthy Hobbitses!”

“Um… okay. You have a good day, sir”. I don’t really blame this guy. Tender awards sometimes happen when they are needed the most, and sometimes when they won’t help a damn.


Tender Awards are not boring, that’s for sure. And very emotional. Anything from surprise, joy and excitement to doubt, jealously and anger. And that’s just the researchers.


Construction isn’t my business; information is, so those of you out there:


Subbies, reach out and touch someone. In the non-lawsuit kind of way. And no one likes a Spammer. This isn’t about shot-gunning a kitchen and hoping a cake will fall out. Be selective. Be smart. Approach those that you know will use your product or service. Approach those that will know what you are talking about. Create relationships. Even if the answer is “No!” that’s still a conversation.


Contractors, do not ignore the subbies. New products, skills and services are being created every day. The construction industry, although very traditional and conservative, is also incredibly innovative. Broaden your supplier lists and don’t get held hostage by suppliers/ subbies who are unwilling or unable to adapt to the times. Give the new guys a chance to impress you. Those that can’t deliver won’t last long anyway. You were once new too. Help a brother/ sister out. Plus, a little healthy competition never hurt anyone


If you’ve been awarded a tender and you’re proud of this fact, and want to metaphorically thumb your nose at your competitors, please email with the details.

Your company is doing well, broadcast it.

Free advertising, people.

That stuff’s expensive.


About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Understanding the Tender Life Process

It's better to be at the bottom of the higher class; than the top of the lower class


In the 9th Grade, I got to choose which science class I would be assigned to. My marks had landed me right in the middle of the class breakdown, so my teacher gave me a choice. I could go to the “lower” class or the “higher” class, the following year. The implication being that the “higher” class would be harder.


There are few instances where being slap bang in the middle are beneficial. Bidder’s Lists are one of them. There is nothing more perplexing than looking at the prices submitted on a tender and there is one extremely high tender price and one ridiculously low tender price. You can almost imagine the tender prices in the middle huddling together trying not to make metaphorical eye contact with either end of the Bidder’s List, in a bid not to be “tainted”. You do not want to stand out on a Bidder’s List. This is not the time to be an individual. Because if you are that incredibly low price; people will assume that you’re under cutting your prices. And if you’re that really high tender price; they assume you don’t know what you’re doing and trying to win the “tender lotto”.


Granted, tenders aren’t awarded by price alone. But price still speaks volumes.


Tendering is not a passive endeavour. It isn’t something that just “happens”. It has to be enforced and monitored at every stage. Tenders are about being competitive and cost effective; while promoting equality, transparency and fairness (I can practically see you rolling your eyes). Yes, I know you are more likely to see the words “corruption” and “price fixing” when reading any headline concerning tenders. And I can’t argue with that. Those in Supply Chain Management Units need to be trained in the correct and legal way of handling tenders, and those in the building and construction industry need to know just as much. The right hand keeps the left hand honest, as it were. In case, no one’s told you; you are allowed to object. If you see any dodgy dealings, call them on it. Maybe you’ve become too jaded; and gone to the private sector (no one can blame you). Maybe you’re too new and naïve; and not sure of the procedures (go learn them). Hell, maybe you’ve joined them.


If you don’t like what your industry has become, change it. If the client isn’t paying you; cancel the contract. If your contractor isn’t doing the job correctly; kick them to the half-finished kerb. In a legal and professional manner, of course. It happens all the time; so why can’t it happen every time? Yes, this is overly simplified. I realise, on the ground, it is far more complicated and messy and nuanced than an outsider like me; could possibly understand. Hard choices abound.


I can only offer this piece of advice my dad gave me “It’s better to be at the bottom of the higher class; than the top of the lower class”. At least you’ve got somewhere to go.






About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

The devil is in the details

posted in: How To 0

The devil is in the details


 Putting your Best Foot Forward when presenting Yourself


Easy. Follow instructions.


If it specifies that the tender document must be filled out in black ink; fill it out in black ink. The odds are there’s a very unamused Supply Chain Manager who’s had to deal with documents filled out in anything from pink crayon to pencil (the ultimate indicator of shady goings on). He will most probably not understand the aesthetic superiority of blue ink or the sudden and inexplicable disappearance of all black pens ever, or any other excuse you might come up with. If it specifies that you have to hand in not only the original tender document, but also multiple copies; be professional and show up on the closing day with the aforementioned multiple copies. Do not put yourself in a position to pull an Oliver “Please sir, can I use your photocopier?”. Anyone else hear a resounding “No!”.


Granted, these details do not seem important when faced with pricing and filling out a document that is responsible for the felling of a small forest. These details do not compare with cement prices or transport costs or the fact that your site is slowly turning into marshland, is being disputed by two traditional authorities and a lone extremely endangered frog has decided to take up residence slap bang in the middle of where your new shiny Mall is supposed to go. But that’s not the point. The devils’ in the detail.


When I get called by telemarketers and they get my name wrong, all bets are off. My logic being, if you can’t get my name correct, why would I give you my hard earned money? If you can’t even remember to sign your own tender document, why should the Municipality/ Department trust you to build that bridge?


Yes, this is a small detail and, I will also concede, petty. But it’s also indicative. There are no business dealings today that don’t involve a contract or some sort of written agreement. These are made entirely up of small details, seemly insignificant details that all parties agree to abide by. Should one of these parties decide to not abide by one of these little details, another profession tends to get involved. They make sharks look fluffy by comparison.


In 1999, the Mars Climate Orbiter, sent to observe Mar’s weather, burnt up in the Martian atmosphere. NASA investigated and discovered the use of English units, instead of Metric units in the calculations. Oops. A detail so small and taken for granted, it was never checked. $125 million up in smoke.


Do you really want to lose a tender because you didn’t carry a total across? Or because you handed it in too late? Or couldn’t be bothered to hand in your Tax Clearance certificate?


In filling out documents, this is not an opportunity to “stick it to the man”. If you want to do business, then be professional and conscientious. It isn’t other people’s responsibility (never mind the Government’s) to give you a break. This is tenders – the competition is ruthless.


So I can’t help you with the price of cement or the fact that petrol’s gone up three times in as many months or with your frog-infested marshland overrun with Environmental types. But I can tell you, to watch the details. Those buggers will get you everytime.




About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Choosing to do the Work

Choosing to do the Work


Have you ever wondered who that guy was, forever rolling the boulder up the hill, just to have it roll back down again? Of course, you have. It keeps you up at night.


In Greek mythology, he was King Sisyphus. Founder and first king of Corinth, from back in the day. Known for promoting navigation and commerce. As well as randomly murdering guests and planning fratricide. What’s Greek mythology without a little murder and mayhem?


Basically, he was cursed because he annoyed and outsmarted the Gods. Zeus in particular, and this would not be borne and whatnot. Greek Gods – the embodiment of sulky toddlers.


So he was cursed to roll a boulder up a hill and just as it reached the top, it would roll back down again. The word is Sisyphean. An interminable act without end. Not very inspiring at all.


Sometimes the focus is on the short game; so the long game fades away into the distance and seems to become unattainable.


However, I always wondered why he keeps trying? Let’s ignore the being “cursed” bit and never mind the “repeating the same action, hoping for a different outcome being the definition of crazy” aspect. I like to think that King Sisyphus still has hope and a goal and a purpose. That he’ll make it to the top and, somehow, roll that boulder down the other side. That all the toil and struggle will result in an accomplishment few believed possible. That the “interminable” is just a disguise for the time it takes to get where we need to go.


“He chooses to do the work. Every single time. Regardless of the previous day’s outcome. And that’s inspiring.”


Or it could just be his bloody-mindedness. Either way, the job will get done.


“Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out”.





About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Building your dreams

Building the Tenders Dream


If you had told me years ago that I would be contributing to a blog, I would have laughed in your face unashamedly. The ugly laugh. There would be hooting and slapping of knees. I would have wiped the tears from my eyes and told you “Good one”. Well, here I find myself. A contributing editor on a blog. Where my opinion will exist in digital eternity. O goodie.


So when in doubt, I do what most do these days – “To the Internet”. Frantic searches for “how to” infographics; scrolling though endless websites listing anything and everything. Truly Alice-down-the-rabbit-hole kind of stuff. However, in amongst all this, I got distracted. As you do. I had wandered down a virtual alleyway and found the below piece of random inspiration:


Build your own dreams,

or someone else will hire

you to build theirs.

And it got me thinking… A dangerous pastime… I know.

Who’s building their own dream on their own? Nobody does it by themselves. There’s always experience from the first job, advice from mentors and parental units, funding and faith money; first offices in truly inspiring places like “the garage”. Oh no. All successful, profitable businesses comprise of just one person. Probably very stressed. I mean, who’s making them coffee?

No matter what your pursuits, business, endeavours, dreams or whatever, everyone strives for success in some form or another. Granted, everyone has their own definition of success, but for the sake of this article let’s narrow it down to the opportunity to “fight another day”. Business is difficult. Business is competitive. It’s built on old school thinking and traditions, and has to constantly adapt to new technologies, ideas and expectations. No one does it alone. Partnerships, support and opportunities exist in your own organisation or you learn to recognise it in others. And then get them on board. I hate to say it, but network, people, network.

And this might be naive, but the excitement and joy we hear on the phone when talking to subcontractors, main contractors or consultants when they’ve won a tender, sounds exactly the same – Beers all round and an afternoon off.

The trick? Hire the right people to build your dream.

And maybe learn to golf.

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

What is a Tender?

posted in: General 4

What is a Tender?

When I started at Leads 2 Business, it was called Daily Tenders. I didn’t even know what a tender was, until I did some research before my interview. That was 2005. Every day since, has been tender notices, in one form or another. Government tenders, Invited Tenders, Quotations, Bids, Request for Proposals, Expressions of Interest, Pre-qualifications; not to mention Requests for Information and Supplier Database Application notices. Show me a contract number, and I can probably guess which Municipality put it out. Not a trick that goes down well at parties, I admit; but  oh so impress in the office. So what’s the difference in the those I mentioned above? Let me tell you…


Government Tenders – Government money, government timing and no one answering the phone at 15:00 on a Friday afternoon.


Invited Tenders – Not publicly known, but invariably someone hears about it from their cousin’s wife’s nephew who heard about it in a bar somewhere. All hush hush. But not hush hush enough, if we get to hear of it. And we hear a lot.


Quotations – Smaller values, shorter tendering periods; and impressive in the sheer quantities that the Municipalities pump out at any given time.


Request for Proposals – “How do we do this?”


Expressions of Interest – “Who would be willing to do this?”


Prequalifications – “Prove you can do this”.


Request for Information – “Tell us why we need this thing, how to use it and for how much”


And let us not forget the various incarnations of the Tender Award – “You’re kidding, right?”. “Call back in two weeks”. “It’s already completed” and everyone’s favourite “Who are you? And why do you want this information?”


(Disclaimer: Definitions are humorous interpretations, and are not to be taken seriously. Unless you have had anything to do with tenders. Ever. And then you get it).

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

A Day in the Life of … Tenders Department

We have a wealth of Tender information on our system.  This information is researched and added daily by a stellar Tender Department.  We speak to the Head of Department, Claire Donaldson, to find out what typically happens in a day.  Take it away Claire…….



“In the Daily Tenders Department, we strive to meet the needs of our subscribers through constant research and subscriber contact. It is essentially a balancing act between our priorities and responsibilities; whether it is sorting through numerous newspapers, websites or gazettes or following up on award information, assisting subscribers or potential subscribers; each day has its own challenges. There is nothing more satisfying than a day done and dusted, knowing we’ve published information that directly benefits our subscribers.”



The various industries that our Tender Department researches are:

Alternate Energy, Fleet Management & Transportation, Demolition & Blasting, Mechanical, Air Con & Refrigeration, Building

Infrastructure, Consultants, Electrical & Instrument, Facilities Management, Fencing, IT & Telecom, Materials & Supplies, Plant & Machinery, Security & Fire, Supplier Database and Trades.


You can find more information at

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

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