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Client Development Advisor - Defense

McKinsey & Company

McKinsey & Company

Sales & Business Development
Washington, DC, USA
Posted on Friday, October 6, 2023

Client Development Advisor - Defense

  • Cleveland
  • Denver
  • Detroit
  • Washington DC

Who You'll Work With

McKinsey’s U.S. Social Sector, Healthcare and Public Sector Entities (SHaPE) sector provides management consulting services to clients across three major sectors, including governments at the federal, state, and local levels. The Defense and Security subsector of SHaPE spans the Department of Defense, and members of the National Security Community.
Through our unique client services model, McKinsey is able to bring federal, state and private sector expertise, capabilities and people to provide a distinctive level of impact for our Defense and Security clients.
You will collaborate with Department of Defense (DoD) focused Client Service Teams (CSTs), on business development, capture management, and proposal delivery, thereby enabling the growth of these CSTs so that they may maximize the impact they have within their associated client communities.
You will play a key role in generating new engagements in the public sector through business development, capture management and proposal delivery. 
You will have responsibilities across all three of these areas, as an individual contributor and key catalyst for collaboration with CST leaders and colleagues. Business development will compose a portion of your effort, with the majority of effort typically across capture management and proposal delivery. As part of core capture management activity, you will lead coordination of a CST’s effort to partner with other organizations to advance clients’ ability to contract the firm for services. 
You will increase the advanced notice McKinsey has of upcoming procurements, which will increase the period of time McKinsey has to shape the opportunity and build its response prior to the issuance of any RFP or RFQ.

What You'll Do

In the business-development phase, you will:
  • Establish and maintain a network of relationships with government procurement professionals and end clients in identified client organizations.
  • Establish senior management and program management relationships with other industry consultancies and contractors with whom McKinsey might partner in service to the government; including both small businesses (across socioeconomic categories) and large business contractors.
  • Collaborate and drive internal client CST days that problem solves around CST growth aspirations, potential clients to serve and capabilities and expertise that McKinsey can bring to drive the most impact for those clients.
  • Work with CSTs to construct comprehensive client account plans and manage the client opportunity pipeline.
  • Support CSTs in the development of written materials for client development discussions, adding specific expertise around client positioning, contracting, and funding.
  • Educate client procurement professionals and potential partners about McKinsey’s capabilities.
  • Gather intelligence about upcoming procurements for which McKinsey might be well suited to compete.
In the capture-management phase, you will:
  • Help position McKinsey as procurements are being formed, by making recommendations to help ensure government is clear about their requirements and will be able to procure the kind of assistance they need.
  • Drive contracting strategy for opportunities created primarily from client conversations.
  • Identify industry partners with whom McKinsey could team for emerging procurements and finalize teaming agreements in collaboration with McKinsey’s contract team.
  • Collaborate with market intelligence focused colleagues to develop opportunity-specific competitive intelligence analysis, along with relative strengths and weaknesses of competitors.
In the proposal-delivery phase, you will:
  • Understand the objectives and requirements of the RFP and formulate a view about what it will take for McKinsey to win the procurement; including pricing strategies.
  • Problem solve with CST and proposal teams to write select elements of proposals.
  • Help identify relevant internal and external resources that can be used in the proposal.
  • Along with the CST, review proposals at different stages of the drafting process, and help the drafting team make course corrections where necessary.
  • Help the CST partners and consultants to prepare for oral presentations, including counseling colleagues on their objectives during the oral presentations and providing feedback on rehearsals.
  • Work with CST partners and contracting specialists to help negotiate contract terms after McKinsey wins procurements.
  • After McKinsey wins or loses procurements, conduct debrief sessions with internal and client personnel, to identify opportunities for the PSP to improve.


  • 17+ years of professional experience in government services acquisition, either as a government employee with program acquisitions focus or from the commercial sector in business development, capture management, and proposal delivery. Preferences for candidates who have worked in government acquisitions, or at large professional-services or aerospace-defense firms, as well as those with prior DoD client experience.  
  • Government procurement knowledge and experience. Deep understanding of the DoD environment, corresponding government requirements development and procurement processes, how such procurement decisions are made, the competitive landscape, and how a consultancy like McKinsey can maximize the chance of winning new contracts.
  • Interpersonal skills. Interact collaboratively with consultants and operate as an integral member of the DoD CSTs’ leadership teams, forging effective relationships across McKinsey’s distributed and non-hierarchical organization. Build consensus for his or her ideas and help lead within their client segment without formal line authority.
  • Go-to-Market partnerships and understanding of contracting avenues. Creativity, experience and a good network of contacts to enable cultivating go-to-market partnerships and contracting/sub-contracting options.
  • Strategic thinking. Collaborate with the leadership of the DoD CSTs to identify new opportunities to grow into white space portions of these client ecosystems and increase their impact over time.
  • Client relationship building. Having a successful track record developing client relationships within the DoD markets.   
  • Entrepreneurialism. Initiative to surface and pursue innovative ideas, without prompting from other SHaPE leaders.
  • Writing and editorial skills. Collaborate with a team of writers, be able to draft and refine win themes that anchor proposals, and advise senior members of the CST about how to improve their writing specific to the government RFP context. This includes experience leading within a standard government proposal development cycle with color team reviews.
  • U.S. citizenship
  • Clearances. Secret or above required.
Apply Now
Job Skill Group - CSS Associate
Job Skill Code - CDA - Client Development Advisor
Function - Operations
Industry -
Post to LinkedIn - Yes
Posted to LinkedIn Date - Tue Aug 15 00:00:00 GMT 2023
LinkedIn Posting City - Washington DC
LinkedIn Posting State/Province - Maryland 
LinkedIn Posting Country - United States
LinkedIn Job Title - Client Development Advisor - Defense
LinkedIn Function - Business Development
LinkedIn Industry - Defense & Space
LinkedIn Seniority Level - Director