The EXA Way is a proven leadership framework that has won over $16B in contracts. With over 35 years’ experience, Alex McPhail shows how your organization can master capture and proposal leadership as a strategic advantage that consistently outperforms your competitors.


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The EXA Way is about leadership. It is not another proposal development process. Win Big The EXA Way is an essential resource for executives, capture leaders, proposal leaders, and everyone who supports complex proposal development.  

When you pre-order, you will receive a link to the introduction to Win Big The EXA Way that lets you decide if this is the right book for you.


From first contact to winning the contract: maximize your win probability.

Complex pursuits demand extraordinary efforts. Winning RFPs requires more than great proposal management—Winning Big requires inspired enterprise-wide leadership at the executive, capture, and proposal levels. The EXA Way is a process and a philosophy that goes beyond winning individual RFPs. Alex McPhail shows you how to create a strategic advantage that continuously outperforms your competitors and consistently elevates your win probability across the organization.

Alex draws upon nearly four decades’ experience in creating this essential guide to succeeding as a contractor. Win Big The EXA Way weaves together the many disparate threads of a complex pursuit. Alex backs up his approach with real case studies in aerospace, transportation, infrastructure, health, IT, finance, and in all branches of defence. He examines every aspect of RFP pursuits: costing, subcontracting, teaming, offsets, win themes, gates, reviews, and proposal writing. Win Big The EXA Way shows you how to transform a good capture and proposal group into a championship team.  

Alex’s deep insights into leadership, process, strategy, and human dynamics illuminates the path that lies between goals and results. Beyond winning RFP pursuits, Win Big The EXA Way also examines the idiosyncrasies inherent in Canadian procurements and how to navigate them.

Win Big the EXA Way covers the following topics in about 400 pages:

  1. Government versus Business Relations
  2. Canadian Procurement
  3. The Request for Proposal
  4. Understanding Evaluation Criteria
  5. The Capture Team
  6. Capture Reviews
  7. Capture Gates
  8. Proposal Reviews
  9. Win Themes
  10. Document and Requirements
  11. Corporate Teaming
  12. Industrial and Technological Benefits/Value Proposition
  13. Writing for Proposals
  14. Opportunity Capture Leadership
  15. Proposal Leadership
  16. The Capture and Proposal Capability Maturity Model

Through the development and application of The EXA Way, Alex grew EXA into Canada’s foremost capture and proposal firm. EXA, now with 40 associates, supports more than one-third of Canada’s top 30 defence contractors. Alex’s many procurement blogs and podcasts underscore his deep understanding and leadership role in pursuing complex contracts.

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EXA Way Leadership

About the Author

Alex McPhail is a thought leader and multifaceted professional with a diverse and accomplished career. He has excelled in the worlds of technology, business, marketing, and literature.

For the past two decades, Alex held the position of President at the EXA Consulting Group, establishing it as the leading capture and proposal support firm in Canada. With over 25 years of experience in executive management consulting, Alex continues to provide valuable insights to numerous organizations facing complex challenges.

Prior to his role at EXA, Alex held senior marketing positions for ten years in a large multinational enterprise as well as in a small business. Alex also contributed to technological advancements, first as a software team leader for eight years, and then as founder and owner of his first company, TeraScope, which manufactured, delivered, and serviced remote-sensing satellite receiving station equipment around the world.

In literature, Alex recently wrote Win Big The EXA Way, a ground-breaking work addressing the leadership principles successful companies employ when responding to complex Request for Proposals (RFPs). As a physics undergraduate at the University of Waterloo, Alex wrote one of the world’s first textbooks that explored scientific computing using the just-released IBM PC.

In academia, Alex shared his knowledge as a former lecturer at Carleton University's Master of Public Policy and Administration program and as an instructor at the Sprott School of Business. He has also delivered countless presentations in leadership and technology.

Alex’s diverse career reflects his expertise and contributions across multiple domains, including science, business, literature, and academia. His commitment to excellence continues to inspire and guide others on their own paths of achievement and service.

Contact Alex McPhail at


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$49.95 CAD