Making Friends with Funders

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Make no mistake about it: Grantseeking is a people-driven process. And key to your success is the grantmakers themselves – the people who make the decisions about awards from corporate, foundation, and government sources.

But who are these people? How do we connect with them? And what do they want from us, anyway?

Being a grantmaker isn’t as easy as you might think. In this lively session, I’ll pull from my own grantmaking experience (and that of dozens of other private and public program officers, reviewers and decision-makers) to give you a realistic, behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to create funder relationships that are authentic, high-integrity . . . and that work for you. We’ll pull back the curtain on the realities of life as a grantmaker – and what your proposal is really up against “on the other side.” You’ll learn what grantmakers love, what makes them grumpy—and how you can be sure you’re delivering what they really, really want, every time!

Your takeaways:

  • Know what grantmakers really want most of all in the whole wide world – as organizations and as individuals …
  • Know what it means to “think through the grantmaker’s eyes”
  • Understand the reality of challenges that program officers and review teams face in their decision-making
  • Know the “Four Keys to Persuasive Proposals” – and how each connects with the reader’s own personal sense of purpose
  • Through a role-play exercise, learn by first-hand experience how a proposal makes a good or bad first impression in just a few seconds – and why
  • Learn about the three Powerhouse Proposal Sections that must pull their own weight – and then some! – for your proposal to work
  • Understand the principle of limited mental energy and how it applies to the choices we make in crafting our proposals
  • Along the way we’ll bust a myth or two … you’ll meet my friend Grumpy Grantmaker … you’ll learn about the 12-12-Scenario … you’ll be introduced to The Systematic Proposal Buzz-Phrase Synthesizer … and much, much more. Come prepared for surprises and “aha!s” – and a whole lot of powerful takeaways you can put to work in your own grantseeking … right away.


Video 1 (14:20)

  • Perspective is Everything: The Three Big Frameworks
  • Practice: What Are You Seeing?
  • The Grantsmanship Game

Video 2 (12:43)

  • More Context: Who Do We Mean by the “Grantmaker”?
  • The Grantmaker’s Mission (It’s Not What You Think!)
  • Thinking Through the Grantmaker’s Eyes

Video 3 (13:03)

  • The Simple Truth
  • Reality Check: What Are We Up Against?
  • The 12-12-12 Scenario and Your Pocket Grants Advisor

Video 4 (13:51)

  • The Power of “Persuasion” – What Does That Mean?
  • What Grantmakers Really Want Most of All in the Whole World
  • Let’s Talk About Relationships …

Video 5 (13:30)

  • Four Keys to Proposals that Work
  • Bonus Key: The “E” Factor
  • You Be the Grantmaker! – A D-I-Y Exercise
  • Lessons from the Winning Edge

Video 6(7:41)

  • Storytime: What Really Happened with Proposal A and Proposal B
  • The 30-Second Rule, in Two Parts

Video 7 (10:27)

  • The Five-Finger Rule of Successful Grantsmanship
  • Three Power-Planning Tools
  • The Magic Wand Grant Proposal Worksheet
  • Secret Code-Breaker Cheat Sheet
  • The Bottom-Up Logic Model

Video 8(8:30)

  • Proposal Powerhouses
  • How to Construct a “Vision Bridge”
  • The Issue Statement
  • The Outcomes Statements
  • The Summary

Video 9(9:55)

  • … But What About the Writing?
  • The Golden Rule of Good Writing
  • The Best Grantwriting Advice I Ever Got
  • The Theater of the Reader’s Mind
  • 10 Keys to Effective Writing
  • “Me”-First vs “Message”-First
  • The Systematic Proposal Buzz Phrase Synthesizer

Video 10 (9:32)

  • The 8 Qualities of Exemplary Proposals (from a Grantmaker)
  • What Have We Covered?
  • Putting It Into Practice

This is an anytime, anywhere online video training. As soon as you enroll, you will have instant access to the recorded training and can watch over any Internet connection, on your own schedule, as often as you like.