Nonprofit Radio for May 26, 2017: Your Grants Team, In & Out

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Diane Leonard: Your Grants Team, In & Out

Diane Leonard returns to share her wisdom on your internal and external grants teams. Who needs to be part of your inside processes and who manages your outside relationships with your funders? Diane is president of DH Leonard Consulting.




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Hello and welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. I’m your aptly named host. Oh, i’m glad you’re with me. I’d be thrown into proto porphyria if you brought to light the idea that you missed today’s, show your grants team in and out. Diane leonard returns to share her wisdom on your internal and external grants teams who needs to be part of your inside processes and who manages your outside relationships with your funders. Diane is president of d h leonard consulting on tony’s steak, too. Charity registration we’re sponsored by pursuant full service fund-raising data driven and technology enabled, you’ll raise more money pursuant dot com, and by we be spelling supercool spelling bee fundraisers we b e spelling dot com what a pleasure to welcome diane leonard in the studio, this time not calling from upstate new york, she is gp c grant professional certified, and she has been a grant professional for over a decade and the president and owner of d h leonard consulting and grantwriting services, she has secured over thirty four million dollars in competitive funds for clients from all three levels of government. And private foundations. She’s, the co host of grant chat, a weekly twitter chat for grant professionals she’s at diane h leonard. And the company is at d h leonard consulting. Dot com. Welcome to the studio this time. Diane. Yeah. Thank you so much. Great to have you glad to be here now. Grantspace schnoll certified. Did the the accrediting association take my advice and change that to certify grantcraft sessional since the last time you were on, you know, i talked with the board, but we haven’t addressed that that specific matter yet. So still gpc grant professional sort of for the time being. But it’s, just the time being we’ll you know, tio r b i brought out the light. Okay, it may be on the right. It may be coming, possibly on the agenda. All right, i just sort of five grand profession. Ok, but your grandpa deshele certified for now, so we’re sort of extending our conversation from, like, the last minute of last time you were on or so way just got into your teams and we were talking about the internal team. But what? We just barely scratched it. So let’s start with your internal grants team? Why is this not just the the, uh, responsibility or might say burden, but we’re on the upbeat side, we’ll say, why is this not just the responsability of the the grant writer? Whether he or she is employee or consultant, isn’t it? Isn’t it just there? That’s what you got this person for, right? So you’re right that the grant writer, the grant professional, they are there to write grants so it sounds like it could be a solo sort of activity. But the reality is you can’t write well and competitively without information from your grantee. Mme. So whether or not you call it a grant team that’s up to you, we don’t care folks ever self identify as a member of a granting right, but finance needs to give information and vice presidents of programmes have to provide the logic models or the details, the design of what you’re going to write for. So if the grant writer was really, quote unquote, just writing the grant, would that really be what the organization wants to implement? What’s going to be in line with their strategic plan, right? We’d be writing in a silo. Okay, now. Yeah, clearly. So we’re getting information. By the way. Ricky, i see you have your d h leonard consulting shirt on. Of course, when you go home without it, which is not just like a land’s end, you know, straight button down. It’s got it’s. A blast really got it’s got ruffled down down the front. Very nice. We’re going were very fashionable. Is going to picture on facebook? Wait the mic flag out on everything. So but not just your average, you know, land’s end corporate shirt. Not anymore. By any means. Well, thank you. Very nice. Your daughter rebecca’s here, rebecca, you like this shirt? You have? You have one of these? Is that you? Have it? She doesn’t have one. You don’t have a dish that while they have special running shirts that on the back say right, period. Sleep, period. Run, period. Okay, we got those for the whole team, so ok, we’ve got a diversity of apparel. All right, so this is you putting land’s end to shame. Very good. Much, much nicer than than your average. Okay. All right, so, yeah, clearly. So we got to get information from other people. All right, so you don’t care if we call him the grants team or not, but but, you know, how do we, uh, how do we get their buy into this to the larger process? I mean, i saw the cfo gives you some numbers, you know? Is that all you really want? I mean, don’t you want we want a little more? Yeah, real engagement. So how do we start to get there by into this process that they don’t feel is their responsibility right now? Well and sometimes it’s, not that they don’t feel it’s their responsibility, it’s that perhaps based on how things have been done before, it hasn’t dawned on them that they could have a better process, a better success rate if there was a more thoughtful, proactive collaboration within the organization. So when we go into an organization and we ask the question, do you have a grant teen? According to our grasp tool, it is less than half in fact it’s closer to about thirty five percent say yes, what’s a grasp tool. So i’ve jargon jail sorry you’re right. Totally grasp tool. What is this? Grasp tool is a proprietary tool that my team and i developed that measures grantwriting nous so there’s twenty great readiness elements and one of them is about your grant team. I can not about what it’s called, but do you have that group? Okay, so based on the data assessment, esso and that’s helped us to understand that said so it’s about thirty five percent have a grant team. That means they’re so sixty five percent. No, right? So when you walk into a new organization and you talk about this idea of a grand team, sometimes the grant professional looks that you don’t kind of holds their heads like they shake their head? Nope, just me write other times the organization is ready for because they’re all non-profits air fighting for dollars, right? There’s a really good thoughts, so they’re trying to figure out how how they can increase their grantspace king success just even a little bit right? A few extra success percentage points or an extra forty fifty one hundred won one million dollars, whatever they’re trying to increase the revenue. So the idea that by taking their resource is they already have the people rearranging them a little bit differently to share for grant process so that it has a better return on investment, usually by some pretty good traction quickly. Ah, but the question is always well, what do we have, like a lot of meetings? What is it? Does it go on the organ chart? What does that mean for me? Right? And so what we look at as a grant team structurally, we recommend that it would be a group that annually plans the calendar agrees on what our priorities are for funding. Who are our funders. We’d return to that’s big picture, so once a year, you’re doing that together. The grant teens then looked different for each application, sometimes depending on the size of an organization. So that’s, where we can really start to improve the process, reduce the stress and increase the likelihood for the funding for the yes. All right, i like the idea of getting some early successes, like, maybe there’s, some low hanging fruit that the team can rally around a success on early success of and from from i guess i should say from yeah, the award letters went to start a grant team idea that first award letter solidifies the process for sure, long term, yes, every reason to think. All right, all right, let’s, go for a break, and diane and i are going to continue talking about your grants team in and out. Stay with us. You’re tuned to non-profit radio. Tony martignetti also hosts a podcast for the chronicle of philanthropy. Fund-raising fundamentals is a quick ten minute burst of fund-raising insights published once a month. Tony’s guests are expert in crowdfunding, mobile giving event fund-raising direct mail and donor cultivation. Really, all the fund-raising issues that make you wonder, am i doing this right? Is there a better way there is? Find the fund-raising fundamentals archive it. Tony martignetti dot com that’s marketmesuite n e t t i remember there’s, a g before the end, thousands of listeners have subscribed on itunes. You can also learn maura, the chronicle website, philanthropy dot com fund-raising fundamentals, the better way. Welcome back to big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Diane. When i introduced you, i i used the bio that was back from last time. You were on in in january and said you had raised thirty four million dollars among lots of organization. Is that still an accurate number? Got any higher than that now? Since we last spoke, it is close to thirty six million. Six gets getting close, but it was never that fluctuates all the time. Million dollars difference. Alright, well, it always fluctuates up. I mean, you never having grantspace clawed back or no, no, you’re way kruckel excellent. There. So bios added eight. Thirty six, nine dollars. All right. And also you mentioned your team and your team goes in now the only team member i know you have his rebecca who’s here. Rebecca’s. How old? Rebecca’s? Eleven. Eleven eyes. Rebecca party your team or the whole families apart of the team for me. Okay. Last shirt. Every everybody wears this. Sure. Everybody gives me coffee. You’re ten number. You’re giving out shirts on the corner. Your team, your team member. Okay, now you have grants other grand professionals. We do. Have other grantcraft specials and and use your your provide. It was a group. No grass grasp, not growth. That’s a scratch. Okay, group. Okay, um it could be grantmaker be gropes if you get a no in coming close to you know what groups lose. Stick with craps. You could you it’s actually an acronym. So krauz looks great, it’s. Good, but let’s like see gp gp. Alright, i will take it under advisement. Tp gp is my recommendation. Okay, um, all right now you say fund-raising not a solo sport, basically. No. Yeah, not fund-raising not in grants, right? We cannot be silent, right? All right. Let’s, let’s talk about some other people who should be involved. We mentioned cfo. We might come back to him or her. Who else needs to be active? Actively helping this process. And they were going to get into how they’re actively helping. But yes. So so, depending on the size of the organization, often we will see the president or the ceo be a part of the annual the big picture granton process, right? Not individual applications, necessarily. But that big picture annual plan a plan which you and i talked. About last time, yeah, listeners could go back and could search tony martignetti dot com and your grants flan or diane leonard, you’ll see the all the times that she’s been on. Well, this’s second, eso you only looking for one other, but, yes, we talked about the grants plan, right? Last time you were on. All right, so the ceo certainly could be involved, right? Absolutely. And so having, though, whether it’s, a vice president of programs or other program leadership that are focused on the actual implementation and service delivery, having them have a voice at the table be an active participant in that big grantee mme annually and on those individual applications that so a voice that carries a lot of weight in the grant team because they’re driving what the applications contain. Yeah, all right. Let’s, let’s, talk about the the talk about the program’s staff for the program that you’re attempting to get funding for correct people carrying out those programs. All right, so what are they bringing in that people who are not taking advantage of this are missing? Sure. So the program’s staff, sometimes they’ll be like, oh, i already have a logic. Model for that program and there that make grantwriting jump up and down for joy if you don’t have to write a logic model, right? Um, they might already have a great activity work plan for what? That looks like implementation wise over the next year or oh. Yep, absolutely. I know those collaborative partners. I can help you get the letters of support, and so they make the asked for the letter? Not necessarily you. They know their clients that they’re serving better than anyone so they can help decide. Okay, we’ve got a limited character count. What are the best demographic stats that we should talk about, or what are the barriers in that limited space? That cheese? We’ve got a long list of barriers out of the dozen. Here are the two that we really should talk about. They can help you narrow that down. So that then we is the grant writer. The grant professional can tell the story in a stronger way. Okay. You mentioned the logic model. Of course. We all know the logic model what’s a logic model. So ah, logic model is a well, i guess i shouldn’t use the word logic. Again is a thoughtful way that you can demonstrate visually your program designed so you start with your inputs from way clients flow through your program. Great. Yeah, i usually think about it, like a conveyor belt is the way that i described it. So you take your got three metaphors going dellaccio logical flow. We’ve got a conveyor belt. What else durney uses their shoot is their trash. You what else? All of those could sure alright, you sick with your comfort the conveyor belt. So because the what happens is that grantmaker zey have a wide variety of logic model forms that they use. So having a logic model in your head that only looks like one thing as a design is really tricky because you’ll united way. We’ll have a different one than a federal government agencies. So that’s why you need to have a general understanding of logic models and how you use them in program design. Right? So if you think about that conveyor belt idea, you take cubine puts your clients your staff. Your resource is set him on the conveyor belt and they has the conveyor belt starts. It moves through, i think. Of ah box, where all the magic happens, but they had very about moving the conveyor belt. Rebecca you’re following this is conveyor belt moving into a box doesn’t make sense for you, because if you could explain this to an eight year old and then i can get it, i can grasp all right, so so far so the conveyor belt and actually you’ve seen the movie like toy story or something. Where there’s all these flames shooting out of the box, but that’s where the activities air happening, the magic. So where you’re delivering counseling services or hiv prevention education or after school tutoring, right, whatever those services those activities are, and as the box of the inputs comes out, the end of the shiny box you can count on is coming on their belt conveyor belt. Most don’t mess up our metaphor. Alright, the conveyors coming out of the box. And you, khun now count how many people you served? How many after school sessions were held? Hominy caregiver education workshops whatever the case may be, but you can count them. You get your outputs and you can at that same time so well or my short. Term outcomes, right? And then a little bit further is the conveyor belt moves well or my intermediate outcomes. What were my long term outcomes at the very end of my conveyor belt? Maybe as far as i can see towards the horizon, right? Well, knowing all that detail is really tough for a grant professional to know about a program that they’re not implementing, right? So filling in i under you can understand the concept that detail that’s where those program staff members are critical. Okay, makes sense. Yes. There you go. You’re with me. Ok, thumbs up. Okay, i understand it. Yes. Now, um, what about the value of their value in? We’re digressing a little bit from the team concept, but but stories, i’m certainly program staff, the ones working with your clients, they’re going to have lots of stories, is they’re valuing in telling a story and individual persons story in a grant? Or is that really not such a good practice? It really depends on the specific type of application. And so part of deciding whether or not it’s important is looking at what the funders application looks like in their preferences, but the what? Is the level of detail. What is the emotion behind the story that a program staff member can share with you, it’s? Not just a one quick sentence. A little success story, but what can they really help build? So, in a federal application? Actually, there was just a great use of a story and that’s, not a place. You always see it. But we had a client that was able to articulate what it would be like for a rural, low income student that was entering middle school that had all these barriers to overcome and quickly in a paragraph walk you through what that student was experiencing. So you felt like this young girl or you felt like this young boy. And so as you got into the heavy meat of this application, your thoughts as the reviewer really grounded in what it was like, is that student right? So used carefully good, vivid storyteller. It can really draw that reviewer in as a grant writer is a great professional. What? I know enough of those details about what those clients are experiencing to tell that sort of story. It be tough. You would not know. Yeah. Okay. Um, now, i would think you mentioned federal grants. I would think that’s a pretty daunting looking package, does it? I mean, just the i don’t make you’ve done scores are hundreds of them, but i just think that it just looks imposing and threatening. Yeah, all of the federal grants federal grant application they are, but sometimes they’re short narratives. Other times, you know, like we’re working on now. One that’s, a thirty page single space that’s, some hefty writing. But, you know, with the right grantee mme it’s completely manageable, you don’t have to work crazy long hours. You don’t have to work all weekend. You don’t have to know out to your family for days, it’s some of those really big ones that don’t that are daunting to people as soon as they do it. The first time in the grant teamviewer sis their old way, they’re sold forever yeah, okay, i’m dying to get to the outside relationship with the funders, but we’re not there yet, so we gotta be going metoo stopping up on the inside because the whole relationship thing it’s excellent. We’re getting to it, we’re getting to it. Um all right, i guess that’s that’s pretty much exhaustion in the program. What the program people are bringing to you and the wisdom they have the on the ground boots on the ground experience that they’ve got that nobody else really has on. Certainly not the grand team or grant writer. Right. Okay, bring them in the europe program professionals. Um, who else? Cfo do we do we we, uh i asked you, who else? And then i tell you, yeah, that’s just the way the show goes and i run it. Cfo, do we beat that up? Is there enough that i mean numbers? What? But an application may ask for more than that if you’re what’s the state of your financial controls, right? And things like that? Well and so usually where cfo’s or the finance staff are involved, like, yeah, i fell out the budget or i review and i approve the budget. But when that happens, we find that if you’re not having conversations early on about how the budget numbers what’s the justification behind those, how does that relate to the design that we’re proposing? They end up being incongruent, we find inconsistencies then between what? The budget? Tells us a story on what the narrative tells us the story so there’s a little bit of ah, that you have to work together to really tell airtight story. So you’re consistent, and that s o there’s like chicken and egg conundrum in terms of the team and who goes first? Okay, once you have the input of both, who then whose responsibility is it, then? Teo, scrutinize this story and make sure that the numbers are in line with what the program people told us, right and that’s where the grand professional internal consistency okay to be like? Okay, all right, i hear which you’re saying this is what the staffing costs, but hold on, we’ve exceeded the allowable salary percentage of the total project budget by funder standards or, hey, it says that you can’t spend more than seven percent on evaluation, and your budget currently tells us eight point five. Well, eight point five percent of the total product budget is what it costs to do the designed evaluation. Okay, now we need to work together. Right? So those things come up and that’s where the grant professional starts to work on alignment between the two. Parties, the financial constraints and the program designed what is the best for the organization. Okay, cool. You give us a sense of how this team works together if we don’t call it a team. Um all right. Who else? Ah, who else needs to be involved if if we have them on our staff data evaluation? What? Anybody in interest? No one. That attention. Tio counting the client outputs, tracking success, tracking satisfaction. And that looks so different by title. An organization that it’s hard to say. You know, not everybody has a director of evaluation. Many, many don’t treyz but someone in the organization is responsible for those client databases for the education session. Workshop reviews rightto surveys somebody’s responsible. So who are they? Whoever they are, whatever title it is, they should be on the team because that data is critical for analyzing as you think about your next application. Did you think about your next application? Write what happened? What happened about this application we’re working on now for the applicator. If we have an application in front of us now, i want to be looking at well, what did you learn last time? What is? The data show so that our projected outputs are anticipated. Outcomes are in alignment with what we’ve been able to achieve before. Okay, so i need the staff person that was doing the data the last time the program ran, or for a similar pilot program, or whatever it is. We need them there with their data, knowledge, teau, help us run some numbers, is and figure it out together. What do we do for organizations that aren’t currently evaluating? Not measuring these important outcomes impact what do we do for them? So i usually will send them is their first bit of homework straight to the wk kellogg foundation. They’ve gotten evaluation handup book that’s on their website for free and it’s. Fabulous and it’s. A great way for groups to begin to think about what evaluation could look like for them. Okay. Do you ever refer a book now? That might be too daunting because we had a we had dr robert penn on he’s. Been on a few times, but the first time he was on and it was years ago. But he has an excellent book that people have quoted to me before. Called the non-profit outcomes toolbox. Yeah. That’s a good one. You know what? Yeah. Oh, you know. Okay, you just don’t assigned as homework to a client because they’ll say, what you giving me his two hundred fifty page book? I thought we were hiring you for the expertise. Why, yes. Feels good to be the book now. Yeah, but it’s got chapters on different methods of it’s a toolbox, different methodology for measuring impact and he’s. Very hey wants to call it. Impact, not outcomes. Some people aren’t too scrupulous about that. But anyway, measuring the good that you’re doing in your beneficiaries lives or whatever it is in the environmental, whatever. Because by chapter, a lot of different tools. Yeah. Okay. So you know that one? Yeah, s o the other thing we do is that depending on where they are, we have a lot of folks that we know that our great professionals and evaluators in their background and so will try to pair them with someone that could maybe walk them through some initial support or give them some ideas. Right? So that they can look at what’s happening. What could they do? What’s feasible for them? For evaluation? Alright, alright, but a good resource. Wk kellogg foundation. It’s a great one. Yep. If you search kellog foundation evaluation handbook it’s small it doesn’t feel daunting in that sense. Tto learn a little bit and think about logic models and what you could measure. Okay, now what do we do? Ah, it’s all that hypothetical. We’ve got a grant application in front of us that asks for measurements and we don’t have any. Should we not be doing this? Application we should really be asking ourselves, can we be competitive, right? We need to think we want the money, we need the money to do a good work, right? And so that measurement question if we don’t have a good answer, really that’s going to be a concern when they’re reviewing it when a grantmaker their board is reviewing it, you’re going to lose some significant either theoretical or real points. And so, as your stacking up against the other applications, it’ll be hard to get that yes, no, are there still applications out there where the the impact measurements are not asked for or there they’re not a priority? Maybe you can tell their apartment, i mean, is that is that still exist? Not all grantmaker sze will formally ask for it sometimes because they let you provide a letter of request of your own design. And so what happens is that if a group doesn’t have measurement is part of what they talk about all the time, it won’t naturally be what they think to put in their general letter, but for other groups that do think to talk about it, they’re going to stand out, right? So they’ll be more competitive in those general formats, but when you’re in all those online applications, the cyber grants, the found ints that grantmaker sze use most of those online zsystems you’re finding questions about measurement worded in a lot of different ways, but the vast majority have questions. Fountains. What is that found? Found in’t it’s on online grant application system like cyber grant. So it’s there’s a common core it’s, a common system that lots of funders use. They are? Yep. So there it’s. Not a specific common application. It’s a common online system. So the funder gets to customize their form using those companies. Oh, i see. All right, it’s. Just okay. Okay. Um all right, let’s. See, we got a couple more minutes before we go out for our midterm break, if you will. What? What are the professionals? We’d be bringing in that we haven’t talked about yet. So in some groups we see human resource is have a seat at the table for the grant team. You know what they contribute? Well, because like, fifteen years ago, they call personnel. Now it now all of a sudden they’re hr human resources. What? What? Is the personnel team the hr team bring so when you look at organizations that are heavily grant funded and they start to ask themselves, well, what percentage of staff are currently funded? Is anybody overfunded, right? Those conversations are riel. They happened when you’ve got organizations that are heavily grant funded and with designated grants. So, for example, we worked with an organization that had two wonderful adult day programs for those with dementia, great programs, and happened to be that the state that they were based in had a great amount of money for them, as did the county governments. And so they ran on different timelines and had to be very careful. Oh, and and by the way, there was black grandfather thing too. So they had all these sources that had to list excruciating detail about which staff for what percentage of fto eat keeping track of that. And what was happening with payroll in hr was an important part of the planning process. So it’s not always that they have to be at the table, but first, some programs for some organizations, you’d be sunk without him. Anybody else you want to bring in? Well, let’s see, we’ve done evaluation, we’ve done cfo, we’ve done program leadership data it and tech khun b a great need to know who to call, right? Because when you’re doing a big grant, you’re like, okay, we’re going out for the computer lab. I shouldn’t be the one out on google looking for computers to figure out what works because it might not get the network. So you’ve gotta have some of those players that you get to call the call the bat if there’s a technology component to your grant, right, it might not be the main purpose of it, but if there’s the technology funding needed, what are we going toe? How are we going, phil? So you fill our need? Yeah, we’ve got sort of like a designated hitter list, right? When the application calls for it, we’ve gotta have folks that know that they’re going to be on deck to help us. Not all the time in the grand team, occasionally, based on the application, okay, let’s not go too far with sportscenter. That was that when you just mentioned on deck that’s basketball, right? If you’re on deck, you’re coming in next, based at the buzzer softball, that’s a baseball right let’s not go to any further with no more sports metaphors on non-profit radio. All right, so where we at? Alright, hang loose while i do a little business, please, and then diane and i are coming back and we’re going to talk about the external team who is managing. I should say the team that manages that those external relationships with funders and your community so that is coming up first. Pursuant the archive of their webinar how to win at data driven fund-raising fund-raising fund-raising data driven fund-raising is up. It answers questions like what should we measure? That sounds from there. I think we’re having this little chat. And how do we make our dated? Actionable. You know, if data is a conundrum for you, as in the hypothetical little diane and i were just talking about or you just want to be savvy or about you like you may be. You feel you have too much data. What do you do with it? Well, how do you shift it out? That’s what this webinar is designed to help you with will help you with get control over your metrics. It again is called howto win at data driven fund-raising it’s at pursuing dot com you click resource is then webinars. We’ll be spelling spelling bees for millennial fund-raising this is a fun night out of spelling bee live music, standup comedy, dancing and making money for your organization. I need to raise more money. This could be the way you want to engage millennials in your good work. This could be the way. Check out the video at we be e spelling dot com now for tony’s take two. Cue the wagging finger have you got your charity registration? Have you got that off your to do list yet? In other words, are you properly registered in each state where you solicit donations, including grants? I can help you. Charity registration it’s part of my practice. I’ve mentioned it before that’s. Why his fingers wagging. I can get this done for you. Check the video at tony martignetti dot com. And that is tony. Take two and i am with diane lettered and she is with me and her daughter. Rebecca is here also. Diane leonard gpc. The company is d h leonard consulting at d h landed consulting. Dot com and you’ll find diane on twitter at diane h leonard and i’m very glad again that she’s in the studio thanks for coming down where your upstate new york i forget where the rochester area no far, far, far upstate, eight thousand island or you’re all the way up your republic by the canadian border you you’re on a body of water too aren’t you would write on the st lawrence river lorts river that’s okay, alright knew it wasn’t on the great lakes. Okay, ron, we’re part of the great lakes system right at the end of lake ontario. Okay. And what is the town that you’re coming from? Clayton clayton, new york? Yes. How cold is it up in clinton now on ly a few degrees colder now. Oh, yeah, right. Because, well, we’re actually doing this in late april, and the temperature dropped, like fifty degrees or something. Doing yeah. Yeah, but the snow’s all melted. Okay, a lot this year. A fair amount of all right. Um, all right. We’re making the transition now we’re going to managing our relationships externally. Let’s start with the funders. But we also want talk about the community. Um, you have ah, you have a whole story about talking somebody recently, who’s who’s very dismayed about getting calls two days before deadlines. It’s true. So in my background, i have it was a grantmaker so i have my own set of skepticism about how people treat grantmaker xero programs program officer, right? It was it was a program officer for a statewide foundation, but it’s been a long time now and so but that background is part of why i was get on the relationship soap box, and i was sitting with the assistant director for the northern new york community foundation, and he and i were talking cause actually he’s writing a guest blogged for us for our firm, and so we were talking about it and said, it just it baffles me goes, i just was getting it yet another call we’ve got a deadline coming up on friday is the conversations having this like, and so they’re calling me, like, two, three days before, okay, so what do i want to put in an application? Well, okay, so luckily had a few minutes to talk, but what sort of application and conversation we’re going to? Have in two days, right? And he said, so there’s just non-profits are out there doing good work, and their website encourages conversation, right car does. What does it say? Call us. It says, please contact us and it’s got their phone number and it’s got their emails. I mean, it’s got to contact us for a minute, i think teo so they’re very open. They don’t demanded they don’t make it a requirement. We know some thunders. Do they say you must call us before so it’s an open invitation and yet still and maybe it’s because they’re caught up because they’re doing really important, truly important things in the community, right? All these groups are resources are limited and so it’s like oops, that deadline’s coming up. I should call them. And so he and i were talking about it again. And just what do you do? How much do you say? Do you make it mandatory? But his point was that it when you make that call last minute and he’s got a quote on the block post actually, about how you feel like an a t m is a grantmaker it feels very transactional like, okay. I need some funds ready versus having it be a true relationship, a partnership in making grants to create impact in the community. And so what we were talking about was the value of what he’s calling the next level gratitude so there’s like the quick phone call before to talk, but then once you get the grant or even if you didn’t, but you’re still trying to maintain a relationship to apply again later, where and how can you have contact that’s appropriate for that specific funder to keep the dialogue going? So, yeah, super excited that max was willing to write the post for us, but it’s not an uncommon story. We hear it from other funders when the program officer we all used to talk about that over lunch when we’d get together, right? Funders talk part of your grantspace lan include contact with the funders that are in your plan. What, i don’t know, two months in advance or how much, but but should that be part of, you know, make initial contact with this funder that we’re going to be approaching in two to three months? Absolutely so when we talk about that when we go back to that grants plan in the grants calendar. Usually when folks have a grantspace alan durney calendar that’s a little upstate. You upstate, you know durney from upstate. I’m from buffalo originally, anyway, so, yeah, i can’t help it. Okay, you don’t have to. I’ll just call you out. Okay? Thank you. So the i can now conscious of self conscious. Okay, so that thing that device that you use clique has basil data dahna be outlook based. Yeah, nothing has deadlines on it is what folks will normally have. Right? Right. Ok, maybe some reports for those current funders. Hey, what about putting relationships on the counter? Right? It’s a critical piece. Now, this we’ve gotta, like, have a huge ass trick. I’m making one in the air. All right? Not all grantmaker is allow communication pre award. They have no capacity or no preference for it. Okay, so we’ve open that up and we have to address the elephant in the room. Not all grantmaker sze will talk to you because they don’t have enough time or they have too many proposals and too many contacts that even with a dozen staff right, they couldn’t handle it so all right, we agree on that, right? Okay, but you know, you’re gonna know because you’re researching this funder because you wouldn’t have put them in your plan if you didn’t know anything about them. Wayward certainly wouldn’t do that approach. The gates foundation? Yeah, great. All right, so we’re going to know we’re going, we’re going to know. So we’ve learned through our research whether or not we can even talk to them. If we’ve done that, like in the example of the community foundation, i would have seen the clues. The writing’s on the wall. Hey, you’ve got staff names. I’ve got phone numbers, we got e mails, they’re offering to talk. I should talk, right? I should put it out there and like you said, gosh, two months before a deadline. That’s fantastic, even a month, two days before that’s, right? Not a good idea, because now you’re also tipping your hat to the thunder that you just started thinking about it. It didn’t. That was not a good thing. I presume they wouldn’t take anonymous call. I’m calling from an organization, but i don’t really say which you know, but this is what we do they probably wouldn’t care for the call like that. Exactly. All right, all right. So you’re going? Yeah, you’re typically exactly you’re revealing that you’re not organized and you’re thinking about this two business days in advance, right? All right. That’s bad. All right, who? Wei don’t have a grantspace sessional let’s, say small and midsize non-profits may not have a grand professional on staff who initiates this call, and we don’t have the benefit of d h leonard consulting helping us who’s through initiates the contact. Yeah, so the answer is that it depends right? It’s sort of a strength spaced decision who likes talking to donors who lights talking to major donors at special events, look around your organization and say, gosh, our executive director loves to talk to people about the programs and okay, so maybe that’s your answer could be that you’ve got a major gifts officer, so you don’t have a grand professional, but you’ve got a major that’s a great person to make that outreach might be that as you look around and you start to think about who’s, connect to who sort of the six degrees of kevin bacon idea, right? You’re like, oh, actually, wait it’s the program’s staff that sits on a collaborative group with the grantmaker they already know someone, they can be the point of contact, right? Backed up with talking points by the development staff by the grantmaker but so it doesn’t have to be one answer. Now the fallback can always be a development director or a grant writer if you have one on staff, sure, now i will say i have another ass trick making another footnote, yeah, go with the footnotes. This one has to be well has to be a dagger, because otherwise the footnotes would be the same. You can’t have two footnotes with asterisk that’s thiss one’s a dagger mary-jo okay, if you have an external grantcraft sessional or an external fundraiser working with you, it is my strong recommendation. They should not be the one reaching out on your behalf to build a relationship, because we can’t answer all the questions right grantmaker zeal have questions if you’re really having a good dialogue grantmaker will ask a question because you’re engaged in a dialogue, right? We’re not just talking at them or vice versa, and when that happens and the well intentioned external fundraiser or grant professional who’s like i will have to talk to my client get back to you now. I say that as an example because when i was a program officer, that happened more than once. That doesn’t bode well for the organization either, right? So, yes, you’ve got this great resource, but you need to be able to answer my questions like pick up the phone now, we gotta book a second call right now, but the questions all right? What? What if there’s reluctance? Because the the ceo or development director i love talking individuals, but now i’m talking to institution, they’re going to ask me questions i can’t answer about about accounting, and they’re going, they’re going toe. What do you have to get over that kind of nervousness about talking to the institution, the person, the person who loves talking to the person or the individual or the couple? Yeah, so we end up coaching a lot of folks that are they’re a little altum it about making that call because you’re right? It does feel different and that there’s a little bit of a power differential that doesn’t always exist with individual donors and the reality is it’s actually my colleague heather storm bug of just right solutions. You’d love her. You should have her on the show. Okay, okay. Making a plug, she’s great. But she’s got a line that is, people grant to people, not proposals xero and so the grantmaker tze and that’s what? The story is about it’s about grantmaker so grantmaker zoo are run by people and its people making the decisions right? So, yes, it seems like it’s all this big institution. But remember that it’s people trying to do good work, they have a mission aligned with yours, right? They want the same general thing thatyou d’oh. So to try and strip away some of that stress of oh, this big structures are reluctant. Okay, on dh parallel with that. Our corollary? What? I don’t visit a corollary algorithm it’s a serum i don’t know is that we do want to have a relationship with these funders like they’re people. I mean, because they are staffed by people. So i mean, this is the whole purpose of having on next team to manage that external relationship. You don’t you don’t just call ah, an individual donor on december twenty ninth because they haven’t made their end of your gift yet. You know you’re in touch throughout the year cultivating, right? So don’t do that to the institutions the institutional funders carry on a relationship because they are staffed by people, right? Yeah, you don’t want to just send in the obligatory grant report on time for the deadline. Okay, hold on. I want to put it again. Another application. Okay, i’m going to buy fifteen thousand. Right? Vicious cycle there’s. So much to do in between that we build it and what’s wrong with picking up the phone and talking to the thunder and saying, you know, we had a i mean, just like sharing anecdotes with a great week this week or, you know, this month this month we were disappointed, but here’s, what we’re doing to turn it around i mean, can you have conversations like that with with an institutional funder? You can. So it depends again on preference and capacity. So is you get to know the fun durney like, okay, they have staff. Oh, they like to talk. Oh, they only like email, right as you learn there. Preferences we worked with a small funder in central new york, not a lot of staff capacity loved promoting grantee work and success on social media, not what you’d expect, but it’s fantastic, right? So as you learn those preferences, you can think about how you’re going to share updates during the year, okay? The media team just did a great job. They’ve got a facebook post, we’re going to share that and tagged the thunder, so now they know what’s happening or i’m going to write a hand written note, right? The art of hand written notes go a long way with grantmaker just doesn’t do with individuals means it’s an individual’s going to open that envelope and read it it’s going to make their day right? I got to hand written notes from different folks that attended sessions recently that i hadn’t met. I instagrammed each of them the day they came in because i was so excited right now because you’re like as a funder who something different, then what i normally get and they’re treating me like a person. Yes, even though i’m representing an institution, i’m still a person. I’m the advocate for this organization when they submit their next application to our board. Right? Is that how it is now? Program officer works and he should get something that looks promising. They bring it to the board of the foundation. Or maybe they’re bringing up the chain. But eventually it gets to the decision makers. But the point is, the programme officer is the advocate for your application. So why not have them on your side? Exactly? It’s, exactly at in the process, you’ve gotta look at it, even in government work. While they might not be able to. Not the peer review were there, not the scoring source can have great relationships with government staff that will help your process. They’re still your advocate, but still are. And they can help you navigate the process and be stronger overall. All right, all right. I wish i i feel like the relationship building part of ah, grants is duitz egregiously overlooked mean, badly overlooked. No, i’d go with egregiously. Yes, not even just badly. Yeah. All right, all right. We gotta go out for a last break. Diane. Of course going to stay with us. And they’re never going to move from from the funder. To the community, let’s. See what you see, what that relationship is about. Hang in there. Like what you’re hearing a non-profit radio tony’s got more on youtube, you’ll find clips from stand up comedy tv spots and exclusive interviews catch guests like seth gordon, craig newmark, the founder of craigslist marquis of eco enterprises, charles best from donors choose dot org’s aria finger do something that worked and they only levine from new york universities heimans center on philanthropy, tony tweets to he finds the best content from the most knowledgeable, interesting people in and around non-profits to share on his stream. If you have valuable info, he wants to re tweet you during the show. You can join the conversation on twitter using hashtag non-profit radio twitter is an easy way to reach tony he’s at tony martignetti narasimhan t i g e n e t t i remember there’s a g before the end he hosts a podcast for the chronicle of philanthropy fund-raising fundamentals is a short monthly show devoted to getting over your fund-raising hartals just like non-profit radio, toni talks to leading thinkers, experts and cool people with great ideas. As one fan said, tony picks their brains and i don’t have to leave my office fund-raising fundamentals was recently dubbed the most helpful non-profit podcast you have ever heard, you can also join the conversation on facebook, where you can ask questions before or after the show. The guests are there, too. Get insider show alerts by email, tony tells you who’s on each week and always includes link so that you can contact guess directly. To sign up, visit the facebook page for tony martignetti dot com. Lively conversation talk. Trans sounded right, that’s two tony martignetti non-profit radio and i am his knees. Carmela and i am his nephew, gino. Carmela and gino, now now thirteen and eleven. I think we record that last year. So their twelve and twelve and ten, uh, love that. Okay, the well, the point is, someone’s gotta manage the relationship with our funders, right? Someone’s got to get to know their preferences. They prefer social or email or phone or everybody loves the handwritten note. We agree on that, but somebody’s gotta manage this relationship right? And so someone has to be the central. You need to have one person that’s managing the relationship, but usually where the great writer, the professional right shit somebody’s going to make sure that they know what’s happening with all of them that everyone’s aware of who’s talking to who, when and where and what are you trying to accomplish? So that in case somebody’s out of a special event or at a conference that everybody’s prepared what conversations are in play? Okay? And how about in the community? You you what you want, you want communications to be good in our community, to sure and so there’s a few different ways that plays out because you don’t know in your community who knows whom? Especially in a lot of small towns, right? Everybody’s connected so that casing clayton it is there having not grown up in a small town, i’ve learned quickly incestuous. Well, i wouldn’t know. I wouldn’t have but just know it’s really it’s everybody’s looking like oh it’s. Only two degrees of connection to anywhere you want to go in northern new york is your local paper have ah, section like talks about diane’s aunt is visiting from the big city rochester and she brought along with her two kittens and you have that in your in your paper are thousand islands on which is truly just st lawrence river paper. Instead, it has a section where if you take your paper to wherever you go, when you take a picture, you get your picture in the paper so there’s pictures as you can, and we’re going over got to bring my copy to new york city. You can’t in-kind burghdoff xero of non-profit radio total are all right, but it’s not quite as closest know your aunt is visiting for the week. Not quite like that, but the point is that you just never know how close the connection could be. You’re talking. To someone in a collaborative meeting, and all of a sudden you realize that it’s, somebody who sits on the board for is on a review panel somewhere, right? You just never know where that connection’s going to play out to a grantmaker and i got news for you that’s the case in new york city to treyz things air compartmentalized so you might be part of a grants panel or or organization devoted to social services. Okay, so now we’re getting pretty narrow, ok? There are a lot of social service agencies in new york city, but maybe somebody in from one of your funders is part of it, and you don’t know it because you don’t know the bio of everybody there, you know? So that does not only the case in small and mid sized towns, new york city can be very compartmentalized. Um all right, so we want to be talking up are funded programs in these forums? Is at the point well, we want to be naturally looking for collaborations naturally looking for spot where we conduce do-it-yourself cause when you think about how the community khun play out in your grants, trat, egy and why you want to have a team that’s thinking about it and then maybe kind of reporting back to the group? It could be that we’re thinking about okay letters of support, foran application or letters of commitment, right support. We’ve got our cheerleading letters, all right? Our senators and our dignitaries funders are like, god, okay, that’s, great that’s, nice, but what they really like are those letters of commitment, the organizations that are partnering together, and they’re like, okay, this is my role, this letter says, i’m going to do x y and z, right? So having the relation in ships in place with those agencies that you would ask for a letter of commitment from those relationships aren’t usually held by the great writer. It goes back to our grant team internally, we’re talking about our program staff again, or our executive director whatever, um so it’s, a really important way that we engage community everything about community as clients who are we serving? Having testimonial letters is either required or appropriate for some grant applications. Well, again, it’s not going to the grand professional that’s usually making that ask it’s going to be the staff member. That the client trusts say, hey, are you willing to write a short paragraph for us about your experience, you know, and these letters of support and certainly the letters of commitment are not going to be coming two business days before you’re your application deadline, they take time? Yeah, way have to be developing these relationships right in advance and asking those that we have relationships with foreign advance. So you’re not running around the city you’re driving all over the county trying to collect letters no good. Plus, you got a writing dead line two and you got a midnight submission deadline and it’s a big disaster. All right, all right. Um, so does that belong on our grantspace lan mean, the attendance at these community affairs? Well, if we think about what’s on the kind of what we go back to our conversation earlier a few months ago, about with the grants plan, i don’t know it always put community interaction onto the plan, but having the team recognize what their role is, their role is applicants application specific for sure, but the things that they do in between applications, having them understand that when they’re out in the community, they’re having these interactions. Those are things that come back, that they might not know exactly which application is going to be relevant to. But they should be stockpiling that information, thinking about the relationships they hold thinking about what advisory groups they sit on or hey, you know what? Actually, this organization we partner with a lot. I think they were talking about this federal grant too cash. I should talk to them before we consider applying. What if we did something collaborative instead of both trying to apply for the same thing, right? That knowledge will naturally bubble to the surface in your internal grant’s team. If they know how and what they should be watching for externally with community we have just like a minute and a half or so before we got to wrap up. How do we how would i know this time flies right now? How do we find the right places to be going in our community? Just like in a minute? Yeah, i would say look at where you are naturally don’t force it. Look it where? There’s collaborative sze. Where there’s? A social service agency gatherings or environmental? Group regional conferences or work groups? Look at what you’re naturally doing and that’s where you need to be. How can you then use those existing relationships for the betterment of your work and there’s? Everything we just talked about, you write all that collaboration. All right, diane, hte leonard with the h for my maiden name, which is corey. Corey. Okay. Diane it’s. Leonard hori is not part of ah, her earl it’s d h leonard consulting dot com and she’s at diane h leonard always got that year was keeping her maiden name present, though, but abbreviated well, and also there’s a there’s, an impressionist painter. Diane leonard. So when you think about ceo and how you identify, i see. Okay, thank you very much for coming, diane. And thanks for being in the studio record. Thank you. Thanks for being here. You probably thought that i forgot live lister loving podcast pleasantries, inflate affections. Oh, you are. You are badly mistaken. The live listener love goes out. There were a couple of weeks, several weeks pre recorded here, but the live love goes out to you, the live listeners and our podcast pleasantries over twelve thousand of you listening on platforms like itunes and stitcher and pod bay and player and deutsche dot d or whatever pod bay dot d or something pleasantries to our podcast audience and the affiliate affections to our am and fm listeners throughout the country listening on those devices those old am and fm radios with the bet with some of you still have the those rotary tuners. I love those. Go away! Down the end there is your station. Thank you for being with us. Affections to our affiliate listeners what’s up for next week. I don’t know, but it will be a good one and it will not be about fermentation. I let you down that time. If you missed any part of today’s show, i’d be seat. 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When’s the best time to post on facebook facebook’s andrew noise nose at traffic is at an all time hyre on nine a m or eight pm so that’s when you should be posting your most meaningful post here’s aria finger ceo of do something dot or ge young people are not going to be involved in social change if it’s boring and they don’t see the impact of what they’re doing so you gotta make it fun and applicable to these young people look so otherwise a fifteen and sixteen year old they have better things to dio they have xbox, they have tv, they have their cell phones me dar is the founder of idealised took two or three years for foundation staff sort of dane toe add an email. Address card. It was like it was phone. This email thing is right and that’s, why should i give it away? Charles best founded donors choose dot or ge somehow they’ve gotten in touch kind of off line as it were on dno, two exchanges of brownies and visits and physical gift. 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