match

5 Things to Know About the Language and Culture of a Grant Donor

I am often asked: “Can I submit the same grant proposal to multiple funding agencies?” Obviously, the answer is a definite no, but it is also important to understand the implications behind such a question. It assumes that all donors are the same; that they would fund whatever we wish funded; that there is a… read more

language

Do You Speak the Private Donor’s Language?

Every time I travel abroad to a place where the language and culture are different, there are always situations where it is difficult to be understood. These experiences often remind me of the flawed way I approached my first grant. I thought the fact that I had an innovative idea would alone merit funding. I… read more

1st-step

The Most Important Advice for New Grant Writers

Several million dollars in funding, heaps of grant proposals that have been implemented, numerous partnerships, and many interdisciplinary successes have taught me that grant writing is a process. Like any other skill, it takes passion, preparation, credibility, and perseverance. If you are writing your first grant proposal, it is extremely important you remember the following… read more

NSF logo

Navigating the National Science Foundation Website

Becoming familiar with the various resources available on the funding agency’s website is the first step in learning how to write a successful grant proposal. For example, the applicant should show familiarity with the mission and the strategic plan of the funding agency. What are the key words in these documents? The applicant should use… read more

obstacle

Seven Obstacles That Kill Your Proposal

The seven most common issues that I encounter from grantees in my workshops emerge from desperation, a false sense of security, or intellectual doubt. I hear comments such as “I thought I would get it done, but time just flew by,” or “we need the money to survive.” I also frequently take notice of statements… read more

comparison

Are You Writing for the Wrong Donors?

I am often asked if the same proposal can be submitted to different types of donors. For anyone who has extensive experience with various types of grants, the answer is obvious. No, you cannot submit the same proposal to different donors. Although grant programs may be somewhat similar from agency to agency or federal to… read more

elevator-pitch

Why should I have an Elevator Pitch?

Being ready with a short elevator pitch about your project can sell your idea and ultimately get you funded. I conducted a workshop in Chicago a few years ago, and one attendee was determined to convince a large Illinois foundation to fund her disabled students’ participation in sports. She tried in vain to get an… read more

faq

Top 10 Grant FAQs

I get questions about the proposal writing process and grants almost every day. What to do, what to submit and to whom, and how to proceed are typical examples of what I am asked. The answers range from complicated to quite simple. My responses also depend upon the knowledge and experience of the person posing… read more

ready

8 Signs You’re Ready to Submit Your Proposal

My years of experience have made it easy to spot the signs of grant writers who are ready to submit, as well as grant writers who are better off waiting. Anxious grant writers frequently contact me for proposal content reviews, and the situation presented to me most often is the following scenario. My tenure depends… read more