Blog Archive

Grant Writing Tips and Best Practices
For Profit Grant Writing Tips and Best Practices

Optin Form


**This post from Micki is a continuation of the support and information provided by the DH Leonard Consulting team for the 2015 New York State CFA grant process to help you think about grant funding for for-profit businesses. You can read our previous post about 5 Tips to Be Prepared for CFA Grants . You can also watch the recording of the free webinar we provided earlier this month about the 2015 CFA grants here.


In my years writing grants for for-profit businesses, I have found state economic development departments and agencies to be a primary source of funding.  This makes sense, as for-profit company projects typically generate outcomes consistent with those of economic development agencies, such as jobs and investment.


However, I have also found that many businesses do not know funding is available from these agencies or how to access that funding.  Therefore, I thought I would hearken back to our grade school days and provide a primer of sorts on state-supported grant funding.  Let’s do our ABC’s!


A – Application:  As a for-profit business seeking funding for a project, your first step is to find the program applications that are a good fit for your endeavor.    I typically recommend you either find an experienced grant researcher (such as those found on our DH Leonard Consulting team) to help you conduct your search, or use the Internet to find potential funding sources.  Your state economic development department and their programs can typically be found by going to your state website and doing a search for economic development and then searching for “grants”.


In order to make the application process easier, some states, such as New York, have developed “common” or “consolidated” applications.  For these states, you use the same application, no matter which state agency you are applying to.  The New York Consolidated Funding Application (CFA), for example, is a single grant application that can be used to apply for funding from 12 different state government agencies.  The agencies are diverse in nature (NYS Energy Research and Development Authority and the NYS Council on the Arts, for example), but all applications are due on the same day and the common application tool helps you identify if a funding sources is a good fit for your project.

Read More

We hosted a free webinar last year about CFA grants, Tips & Tricks for Successful CFA Applications*, in partnership with Aubertine & Currier Architects, Engineers, & Surveyors, PLLC.

The webinar was full of tips and reminders to help you be competitive in the New York State Consolidated Funding Application grant funding cycle. Those same tips are still critical to follow in the 2016 application round so we are making the information available to you again.

You can download the pdf of the workshop slides at no charge here.

You can download the recording of the webinar at no charge here.

The New York State CFA (Consolidated Funding Application) application and process timeline was announced with the application being formally released via the Grants GatewayThe application deadline is July 29, 2016.

Now it is time for all nonprofits, for profits, and other eligible organizations to look at the resource guide and determine which funding opportunities are suited to their own priorities.

What are some of the key things that all grant seeking organizations need to keep in mind during the CFA process regardless of whether a nonprofit or for-profit?

Read More

**This session is not endorsed by, organized, or created by the State of New York or any affiliated department.

Presented By: Diane H. Leonard, GPC

GPA Approved Trainer

Grant Professionals Association

Approved Trainer



The live session has ended.

You can download the pdf of the workshop slides at no charge here.

You can download the recording of the webinar at no charge here.

Price: Free (This webinar is generously sponsored by DH Leonard Consulting & Grant Writing Services, LLC and Aubertine & Currier Architects, Engineers, & Land Surveyors, PLLC.)

Duration: 45 Minutes

Read More

22 Dec 2014

Being Ready for the DATA Act

There are no tags 0 comments

This week on GrantChat we talked about the ways nonprofits can focus on being ready for the DATA Act and OMB’s new Uniform Guidance has and will impact the grant profession and our organizations/clients.  The Digital Accountability and Transparency Act  (DATA Act) was passed  by Congress and signed into law on May 4, 2014 and goes into effect for new grantees on December 26, 2014. Within the Grantchat community, we are optimistic about the ways the  DATA Act will impact our organizations’ policies, proposals, financial process and grants management.

The DATA Act  significantly overhauls and strengthens Federal grant-making regulations to improve outcomes for government agencies, grant funded programs and citizens.  As part of this effort, the Council on Financial Assistance Reform (COFAR) implemented new OMB guidance on grant-making across all Federal agencies that:

  • Reduces the total volume of financial management regulation for Federal grants and other assistance.
  • Reduces administrative burdens and risk of waste, fraud, and abuse.

Read more of the summary #grantchat post and see what resources were shared including a checklist from Dr. Judy Rifle about being ready for the DATA Act which goes into full effect for awards made after December 26, 2014 here.

What are you doing to increase your personal capacity to improve your grant seeking efforts?

What are you doing to increase your organization’s or your clients’ grant seeking capacity?


Yesterday, I had the privilege of partnering with the United Way of Northern New York and Aubertine & Currier Architects to provide a free tri-county wide nonprofit capacity building workshop focused exclusively on grant seeking. Pretty amazing, huh? It was!

To have nearly 70 nonprofit and business community leaders in one room to focus on their organization’s and personal grant seeking capacity was an empowering message for everyone. Not only did is show that everyone in the room was focused on increasing their personal grant seeking competencies, but it also demonstrated their commitment to thinking outside of the box and thinking about what other natural and perhaps natural, yet non-traditional partners exist. The workshop itself – the tri-county local United Way, a for-profit national grant writing firm, and a regional LEED certified architecture firm modeled for the participants that through collaboration in our rural regions, we can have much greater impact than we would if we acted by ourselves as a single nonprofit or business. This message is exactly my point as it relates to creating impact with your potential grant funders. Look at how partnerships in your efforts can help create greater impact for your funders, and ultimately achieve your mission and serve your constituents in the best way possible.

Are you interested in facilitating a similar dialogue in your community? Have you been promoting or part of a similiar conversation recently? Drop me a note in the comment section, connect on social media, or an email diane and tell me about your goals and your experiences.

© Copyright 2006-2018 DH Leonard Consulting. All Rights Reserved.