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Monthly Archives: October 2018

In late 2018, many blogs offer insights about how to seek, find, get, and keep a grant award, how to write a grant proposal, and related topics. The blogs vary widely in longevity, source, style, scope, depth, and quality; each one is worth a visit, perhaps even a tour.

 

This second post samples some of the diverse blogs about grant seeking and grant proposal writing. Its topics are: logic models; planning tools; prospect research; success factors; sustainability; and technical reviews.

 

The first post samples the same blogs. Its topics are: assessments of need; career paths; choice of voice; collaboration and networks; development process; goals and objectives; and grant writing myths. The context for both posts is the United States of America. Comments are always welcome.

 

Logic Models

 

Logic models are versatile tools for program design and project management. A particularly inspiring and reassuring post on the Grants4Good Blog, by Margit Brazda Poirier, presents some of the roles of logic modelsin developing grant proposals. An elegant post about the power of logic models, by Barbara Floersh, appears on the Grantsmanship Center Blog. Another related post on the Grant Training Center Blog, by Mathilda Harris, also argues for the utility of logic modelsin project planning. GrantResultshas an eight-part series (2016) about using logic modelsin writing proposals and in implementing funded projects.

 

Planning Toolkits

 

Grant proposals require extensive planning and coordination. In a helpful post on the Grant Training Center Blog, Mathilda Harris examines the potential role of seven-component grant design chartsin planning a proposal and getting it funded. In the Foundation Center’s Grant Craft Blog, a thought-provoking post by Aimee Hendrigan describes the RACI matrixas a tool for fostering collaboration among grant recipients. GrantResultspresents a six-part series (2017) about Gantt charts, PESTLE analysis, SWOT analysis, Red teams, and several other tools for developing grant proposals.

 

Prospect Research

 

Knowing where to find grants is essential for grant seekers. Affiliated with the Foundation Center, famous for its comprehensive foundation directories, the GrantSpace Blogprovides a helpful overview about finding fundersin an applicant’s geographic area. GrantResultshas an eight-part series (2013, revised 2017) about state directories of grant makers, organized by geographic regions (e.g., New England, Midwest, Southwest).

 

Success Factors

 

Applicants may or may not get a grant for many reasons. The Grant Writing Basics Blog Seriesprovides a wealth of insights about winning and keeping federal grants, not the least of which is its post about verifying eligibility. On the Grant Training Center Blog, Mathilda Harris identifies 20 waysa proposal may fail to win a grant. Similarly, on the Let’s Talk Nonprofit Blog, Laura Rhodes offers tips about how some foundation grant makers make funding decisions. GrantResultsprovides a six-part series (2017) about some reasons why grant proposals may failto get funded (e.g., readiness, choice of opportunities, applicant attributes, proposal content).

 

Sustainability

 

The question of sustainability is pivotal for many grant makers. On the Grant Helpers Blog, in an instructive post, Michelle Hansen presents five key elementsof a sustainability plan. A penetrating post about the elements of sustainabilityalso appears on Barbara Floersch’s Grantsmanship Center Blog. GrantResultshas posted (2017) several tips for developing sustainability plansfor grant proposals, and has also posted (2013) seven strategiesfor developing sustainability plans.

 

Technical Reviews

 

Expert panel reviews make or break many grant proposals. On the Grant Writer Team Blog, a particularly informative and insightful post by Elaine Rose Penn explains what grant reviewers look forin proposals (e.g., partnerships and sustainability). The Grant Writing Basics Blog Seriesexplains peer review panelsand the application review process. On the Seliger+Associates Grant Writing Blog, Jake Seliger encourages grant seekers to write foremost to satisfy the needs and expectations of grant proposal reviewers, not other audiences. GrantResultspresents a two-part series (2012) about analyzing federal requests for proposals(RFPs) and becoming a reviewerof grant proposals.

 

 

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In late 2018, many blogs offer insights about how to seek, find, get, and keep a grant award, how to write a grant proposal, and related topics. The blogs vary widely in longevity, source, style, scope, depth, and quality; each one is worth a visit, perhaps even a tour.

 

This first post samples some of the diverse blogs about grant seeking and grant proposal writing. Its illustrative topics are: assessments of need; career paths; choice of voice; collaboration and networks; development process; goals and objectives; and grant writing myths. The second post will sample the same blogs. Its topics will be: logic models; planning tools; prospect research; success factors; sustainability; and technical reviews. The context for both posts is the United States of America. Comments are always welcome.

 

Assessments of Need

 

Among grant seekers and grant makers alike, evidence of need is a springboard for action. On the Professional Grant Writer Blog, a post offers four ways to improve statements of needin grant proposals. The Grant Training Center Blogalso presents a post by Mathilda Harris about how to craft a compelling statementof need. GrantResultsoffers 16 tips for presenting an assessment of need(2012, revised 2017), as well as tips for addressing other common elements of grant proposal narratives.

 

Career Paths

 

Grant writing is a peculiar occupation. On the Grantsmanship Center Blog, Barbara Floersh explains how and why “grant writer” needs burialas a job title, since it is the grant maker that writes the check for a grant award, not the grant seeker; the position is more aptly called a “proposal writer”. In an engaging post on the Seliger+Associates Grant Writing Blog, Isaac Seliger explores work styles and writing habitsas occupational facets of developing grant proposals. GrantResultsdescribes what grant writers doand common career pathsas two posts in a five-part series (2017) about grant writing as a career.

 

Choice of Voice

 

As acts of writing, grant proposals must persuade as well as describe. On the Grant Writers’ Seminars and Workshops Blogare several useful reminders about the importance of voiceand word choice in persuading makers of scientific research grants. In an eloquent post on the Grant Training Center Blog, Mathilda Harris presents five aspects of writing stylethat improve the odds of winning a grant award. An incisive post by Holly Thompson about the power of consistencyin proposals, on the Grantsmanship Center Blog, is also apropos. GrantResultshas a post (2013) about choice of voice(formal/informal, technical/non-technical) in writing grant proposals.

 

Collaboration and Networks

 

Collaboration often helps position grant seekers to win grants; networking among grant seekers fosters collaboration. On the Grant Plant Blog, a compelling post describes the challenges and benefitsof collaboration among nonprofits. In a persuasive post on theGrant Helpers Blog, Roland Garton presents how inter-agency collaborationsmay stimulate partnerships and lead to more grant awards. Isaac Seliger, on theSeliger+Associates Grant Writing Blogoffers an entirely different take on the merits of collaborationin grant seeking. On a related topic, GrantResultshas a three-part series (2013, revised 2018) about creating and sustaining networks of grant seekers.

 

Development Process

 

Creating a grant proposal entails far more than writing. On the Grant Helpers Blog, Roland Garton explains how developing a proposal entails planning and researchas well as writing. An illuminating post in the Let’s Talk Nonprofit Blogdepicts writing grant proposals as having three legs(research, writing, and review). Similarly, GrantResultsoffers a post (2012) about the four dimensionsof developing grant proposals (research, communication, budget, and writing).

 

Goals and Objectives

 

In writing a program design for a grant proposal, a goal is the completed marathon, and objectives measure what it takes to complete it. On the Grant Professionals Association Blog, Lisa Sihvonen-Binder distinguishes between goals and objectivesand explains why they are not the same thing. GrantResultsdefines goals and objectives in a five-part dictionary of proposal developmentterms (2016, revised 2018). GrantResultsalso offers a seven-part dictionary of budget developmentterms (2016, revised 2018).

 

Grant Writing Myths

 

Myths about grant making and grant seeking abound. As an example, the Grant Geek Blogprovides a cautionary tale about several myths surrounding the ease of getting grantsfor businesses and individuals. A brief post on the Professional Grant Writer Blogdelineates five frequently encountered grant writing myths. In a discerning post on the Grant Training Center Blog, Mathilda Harris describes eight grant writing mythsthat confront grant seekers from the outset. GrantResultsprovides a (revised) 12-part series (2016) about the myth of omnipotenceand 11 other myths in the arena of grant funding.

 

 

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