Friday, January 18, 2013

The 7 Sins Of Grant Seeking

It's said that breaking any of the seven deadly sins will doom you to a life of eternal damnation. That's probably not going to happen if you break any of Alan Silver's seven sins of grant seeking, but you will probably lose out on that funding you want.

In his book "How to Win Grants," Silver described each of the "sins" grant seekers often commit in their quest to get funding for their organization. He wrote that, by avoiding these sins you will instantly improve your grant funding chances. His seven deadly sins are:

  • Don’t ask for money from people who will never give it to you;
  • Don’t shotgun cookie-cutter proposals to long lists of funders;
  • Don’t contact funders until you have learned about their funding priorities, types of projects and grantees, geographic preferences, and all other things you can find out about them;
  • Don’t ask for funding before you know exactly what you need;
  • Don’t submit a grant proposal without having another person read it for meaning, content, and style;
  • Don’t talk too much about your project and write too little about it; and,
  • Don’t give up too soon. If you have a good idea and you refine its presentation, it’s increasingly likely someone will fund it – maybe even the funder who originally rejected your proposal.
Have you ever committed any of these sins? Let us know in our comments section which one(s) you committed, and how you learned from it in future proposals.

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