Be surprising in bids is, I think, a really crucial thing. Mainly because it can be the point that differentiates you from the others that are responding to it. No-one ever said: “Surprise me” so it’s not something that they’re going to write it in an ITT bid, or an unlikely thing they’re going to write.
But it’s something that can make yourself more memorable, you can be creative, you can differentiate yourself through this point. And I think if you’re able to educate or perhaps add some value through part of what your message is, then I think that’s a great surprise for someone to receive.
Possibly one I wouldn’t do, is one where I worked many years ago, and there was an ITT for one of the train companies. And to make a point, one of the responding bid teams turned up to the meeting for their presentation seven minutes late because that was the average delay on that current railway company at the time.
Probably (it) isn’t something that was welcome to be surprising but certainly there are other ways to be positively surprising.