Grant Writer’s Blog

Even Professionals Need to Go Back to the Grant Basics

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AKA Amanda and the horrible, no good, very bad grant writing week I have been a grant professional for 20 years, and for the past six years taught an introduction to grant writing course to thousands of people across the country. I know the best practices for grant writing—meeting deadlines with a quality, complete proposal. Yet despite all this, I made three major mistakes in…

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Keep Asking: Lessons in Not Holding Back

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On this week’s episode of the Fundraising HayDay Podcast (Season 4, Episode 14), Kimberly and I had the great fortune to chat with Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers of the popular podcast, Pantsuit Politics. We didn’t stick with a theme for the episode, but rather asked all the questions we wanted to, from earmarks and use of data to having difficult conversations and being…

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Five Ways Social Media Has Helped Me Grow as a Grant Professional

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What’s your take on social media? Between doom scrolling, cyber bullying, and the time suck, it certainly has its low points. But on the flip side, it can connect friends and family, provide information, and entertain. I’m a big believer in finding the positive and making the best out of any situation. Just call me Pollyanna. I have found good in social media. I have…

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The Dollars are in the Details: Win More Grants with On-Site Research

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Are you a grant professional who spends hours alone in front of your monitors weaving words, data, budget numbers, and a cornucopia of requested documentation into grant after grant, day after day? Or are you new to the organization seeking to increase grant funding? Maybe you write grants to the same funders year after year for the same meaningful programs? If you answered yes to…

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Don’t Chase the Money: Do Your Grant Prospect Research

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Picture this: Sicily. 1942.   Just kidding, I do love me some Golden Girls, but this is a grant blog post. Let’s try again.   Picture this: your boss hands you a federal grant proposal. It is due in two weeks. After reading the grant guidance you start talking to the appropriate co-workers. Turns out, there is no program in place, no plan of action….

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The Unicorn of Illinois: A Streamlined, State-Wide Grant System

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In 2019 I attended my first National Grant Management Association Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. If federal grant management is one of your duties, then this is the conference for you. I submitted a workshop session entitled “I Survived an OIG Audit” that was added to the session lineup. As I stood in front of my fellow grant managers, I realized that nearly half the…

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What Diets Taught Me About Collaborative Grants and Fundraising

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I have struggled to maintain a healthy weight for years. My goals have nothing to do with the wasp-waisted curves filtered through Instagram posts. Keeping my body healthy for long-term is more my speed, and that involves shedding some pandemic pounds. Over the years I’ve lost and regained the same pounds through a bewildering series of diets—low-carb high-fat, no fat, counting points, never weighing, only…

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Grant Training Journey; Take Your Professional Development To The Next Level

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In the field of grant professionals, individuals including our own team will talk about their winding career paths. The reason the conversation is about winding paths is that there are SO many different paths of education and on-the-job training that individuals take on their way to becoming a grant writer, grant professional, or grant team member.  That’s why we have laid out what the different…

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How Do I Structure a Grant Writing Team?

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Dear ExperiencedGrant Writer, I’ve been a grant writer for a few years now, and I’m taking over as a lead grant writer in the industry that I’ve been a part of for the last few years. My job is to find large grants for the nonprofit that I’m a part of and I also oversee the other grant writers that are attached to the departments…

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What Are Some Go To Resources For Grant Writing Education?

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It often feels like a big world for new grant professionals. There is so much to learn and so many decisions that are left to the grant writers. The decisions, I think, are what cause new grant writers pause, like a new writer coming to an empty page. One person reached out to Diane and mentioned that she was a grant writing intern fresh out…

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