From one writer to another…
Hi, I’m Lorinda. Working as a grant writer and trainer for more than a decade, I’m an entrepreneur at heart with a passion for supporting other business owners in their quest for success. Community causes are always at the forefront of my mind, and my hope is to share years worth of business experience to support nonprofits in their essential efforts of making this world a little brighter. I spend most of my time in Miami, Florida enjoying the sun and reading a good book.
It’s easy to see grant writers as the magic few who are tasked with the responsibility of acquiring needed funding for a charity’s project or more often times, to keep their doors open. More often than not, people reach out to a grant writer consultant (aka freelancer) when the org is strapped for cash and has no other avenue to salvage their programs. Grant consultants are seen as “the last option” for many desperate clients who otherwise have no options for accessing needed funding. The sad reality is that this desperate cry for help is more often than not a bust for both the grant writer and the client. It leaves both parties unsatisfied because of the overburden of stress and desperation looming over their heads. The grant writer signs away their life by being expected to resolve years worth of poor financial planning on the nonprofits side in a matter of a few months, while the nonprofit feels like they’ve spent their last precious few dollars on a gamble. Both parties enter into an almost impossible agreement where no one leaves happy. It happens time after time, client after client, and in my opinion is why grant writers get such a bad rep.
Instead of reaching out to a grant specialist when times are tough, there needs to be a shift in perspective. I follow a lot of spiritual teachers – those who believe in the energetic nature of the world. If you come into a working relationship with a mindset of lack, that’s exactly what you will yield – not enough money, dissatisfaction with results, and overall failure. This is true of both the client and the grant writer, and creates a pitfall for both parties.
Not all the blame is to be put on the nonprofit client – not by a long shot. There are MANY circumstances where the grant writer – desperate for a new gig – enters into a contract that they know has bad energy, yet does so to pay his or her bills. I’ve been there, especially in my early years as an entrepreneur. Chasing opportunities and putting my services on the “clearance rack” was how I operated in the beginning and all it led to was disappointment and a lack of job satisfaction. This is why so many grant writers and personnel responsible for grant writing activities quit. Unrealistic expectations, an overwhelming sense of lack and desperation, and overall bad juju.
A better approach is for nonprofits to reach out to grant writers when things are going well for them. From an energetic perspective, a feeling of abundance will bring more abundance!
Grant writing should be seen as an essential task of any community operation, not a response to crisis. Grant writers should also value themselves, create standards, and only take jobs they know they’ll be successful at. Choose clients whose mission empowers you. Work with people who respect your professionalism (and prices) and I guarantee you’ll see a shift. Be in a mindset of abundance, success, and happiness in what you’re doing. That is what will yield the $$.