Doan says small businesses can take on big jobs

The notion that small businesses are not able to take on large contracts as prime contractors is "B.S.," said General Services Administration Administrator Lurita Doan in a speech last week.

Doan, speaking to business owners Nov. 15 at a GSA-sponsored conference for the veterans and service-disabled veterans small-business community, said the owners should not be shy about competing for larger opportunities.

Regarding the charge they may not be able to compete, Doan drew a long round of applause by saying, "My response to that has been 'B.S.’ "

The agency administrator, a former small-business owner, said small companies must take initiative. "I need you to work together on these government procurements,” she said. “Do not be intimidated by their size. Embrace the opportunity. I need you to go for it.”

Some sectors of the government don't embrace the small-business community, she said, describing that as "FUBAR." FUBAR, a common military slang term, means "[Fouled] Up Beyond All Recognition." She did not specify which sectors of government she was speaking of.

Small businesses are ready to handle bigger challenges in government contracting, she said. For example, GSA has its Infrastructure Technology Global Operations Acquisition Initiative, a $300 million, five-year deal, set aside for small businesses. Small-business owners and large system integrators have mixed reactions to it.

“I am here to tell you that this year, this is your chance,” she said to the small-business owners.

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