Nonprofit Radio for March 15, 2021: Relationships With Funders

My Guest:

Shavonn Richardson: Relationships With Funders
There’s too much transactionalism and not enough relationship building between nonprofits and their institutional funders. Are you a transactionalist? Do you want to walk toward the light of relationship fundraising with foundations and corporations? Shavonn Richardson can show you the path. She’s CEO of Think and Ink Grant Consulting.

 

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[00:00:13.94] spk_3:
Hello and welcome to tony-martignetti non profit radio big

[00:01:56.24] spk_1:
non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast. Oh, I’m glad you’re with me. I’d get slapped with a diagnosis of African trypanosomiasis if you bit me with the idea that you missed this week’s show. Relationships with Funders. There’s too Much Transactional is, um, and not enough relationship building between nonprofits and their institutional funders. Are you a transactional ist? Do you want to walk toward the light of relationship fundraising with foundations and corporations? She, even Richardson, can help you. She’s CEO of Think and Ink Grant Consulting, tony State, too. Podcast pleasantries, reduction. We’re sponsored by turn to communications, PR and content for nonprofits, your story is their mission. Turn hyphen two dot c o. I’m very pleased to welcome shaven Richardson to the show. She is founder and CEO of Think and Ink Grant Consulting. She worked as a program manager for a corporate funder, deploying over a million dollars in grants and sponsorships to Atlanta nonprofits. Now she gets grants for her clients and has successfully leveraged over $25 million in funding. She’s a Forbes thought leader and serves on the board of directors for the Grant Professionals Association. She’s at Shavon Richardson and her company is at Think and Inc grants dot com. Welcome to nonprofit radio Shabaan.

[00:01:57.78] spk_0:
Thank you, Tony. Thanks for having me.

[00:02:02.04] spk_1:
Absolutely. It’s a pleasure. Do you know the shaven Richardson who stole your name from Twitter before you before? I

[00:02:08.81] spk_0:
wish I could hunt her down and get her her Twitter tag. Yeah, that would be more convenient for sure. You

[00:02:17.04] spk_1:
haven’t. You have not threatened

[00:02:18.09] spk_0:
her? Not yet. Not yet. But if you find her, let me know.

[00:02:21.14] spk_1:
Okay, well, we know how to find her on Twitter. She’s Ron Rich. Uh, we don’t like her Shiban Richeson

[00:02:28.70] spk_0:
on

[00:02:36.64] spk_1:
Twitter. So you have the, uh, background of being a program manager. You are concerned that and I obviously you saw this as a program manager that folks are are to transactional, right? They submit these blind applications they don’t have relationships with with program managers like you. You wanna like you used to be. You want to turn that around?

[00:03:20.44] spk_0:
Yes. Yes, yes. I was a program manager at Bank of America Foundation. Oversaw a lot of the, um, grants that came in and sponsorships that would come in. Reviewed applications, build relationships with non profits. And I think my biggest pet peeve was, um, someone committee what we call a cold application without any outreach to our office or any connection or we knew anything about.

[00:03:25.44] spk_1:
So even with Bank of America, we can we can have we can. We can establish a relationship with a person at Bank of America

[00:03:32.19] spk_0:
Foundation that it is doable.

[00:03:36.64] spk_1:
Okay, all right. And I presume the folks with the relationships have a better shot of getting funded, right?

[00:04:11.94] spk_0:
Why are they overall, just in general? We’re talking about any funder, right, whether it’s a corporate funder or a family foundation or any sort of private foundation, the more they know about you and more about your nonprofit organization and more about the really valuable work that you’re doing. Um, they’re more. They’re in a position to make a determination whether they want to invest in support, that the work you do. So it’s all a part of getting to know you. You’re getting to know them and making sure that there’s an appropriate match,

[00:04:40.84] spk_1:
because the program manager is basically an advocate for your grant application, right? If they believe in it, then they have to bring it up. Obviously, it’s certainly a Bank of America, you know, to bring things up to folks, folks above to to get approved funding. So, like, aren’t you? Isn’t the program manager basically the advocate for the grants that that, uh, he or she believes in?

[00:05:25.34] spk_0:
Yeah, well, you know, they can be an advocate, right? It just really depends, because every fund is different, right? So, you know, some funders will have the program managers make the decision as a group as to who gets funding. Sometimes the program managers are in a position to kind of gather all the applicants, maybe writing a summary, uh, what the program is, and then maybe boarding it to a board of directors or a committee or a group of non profit leaders that are responsible for actually making the decision. But either way, a program manager is involved in the process. Um, and the more they know about you, the more that you know, there might be some opportunities for them to be an advocate if it’s appropriate.

[00:05:41.74] spk_1:
Okay, So if we’re thinking about, uh, let’s start with the corporate since you were on the corporate side and then we’ll talk. We’ll talk about foundations to, um, But let’s start with the corporate side. How do you? Well, I guess it starts with research. You’ve got to make sure you’re talking to a corporation that funds the type of work that you do in the area where you are, right. So it starts with good research,

[00:06:58.04] spk_0:
especially research, you know, especially large funders, large corporate funders to get a lot of emails and calls from everyone right about different things. But if you just start with going to their website and learning more about, they’re giving priorities. Every corporate funder has given priorities or their focus areas on their website. You want to make sure that the work that you’re doing is in line with one of those focus areas so that you’re not reaching out to a funny to say, Hey, do you support this really cool thing that I’m doing when it’s already very clear on their website that they do or they don’t all the times they’ll have, like a little survey of yes or no questions to see if you’ll be eligible to apply, so that’s that’s the first step. The next step would be kind of, um, the outreach, right? Some will say, Hey, we don’t have the capacity entertained phone calls. If you want to engage with us, please send in a l O I, which in our industry is considered a letter of intent or a lot of interest. So that’s just a quick summary of your program for them to get to know you. Others have just a general inbox, um, email that you’ll find on their website. If you have questions, you know, here is a way to contact us. So those are kind of like the first ways to start connecting with a potential corporate funder and build a relationship.

[00:07:11.57] spk_1:
If there one that’s willing to take calls, you, uh, you pick up the phone and what do you say?

[00:07:18.84] spk_0:
Well, I say they were at least I can say, at least for our clients that it’s a very strategic conversation we actually plan. Yeah, just don’t pick up the phone calls. They take calls school. I mean,

[00:07:33.94] spk_1:
let me chat them up about my work. Okay, So what do you think What are you planning before you before you do pick up the phone?

[00:09:00.44] spk_0:
Yeah. So if everybody gets on the phone, it’s always good to have at least one or two people that you’ve connected with, um, as far as their contact information. Right? Because folks leave, folks come and go all the time. So the one person that you’ve connected with, if they leave, then you’re you’re kind of out of luck. So it’s good to have, you know, to contact, right? Um, if you reach out via telephone to arrange some time on someone’s calendar or via email, I would always say limited to 15 minutes, right? They’re busy people. And in that 15 minutes, you have a clear understanding of what you’re talking about. Oftentimes with our clients, these unscripted conversations that we plan, we’re not scripted word for word. But we do have a strategy as far as what we want our clients to share during those conversations and really stick to it. Um, in the end, leave a few minutes for any questions. Um, always end with a like a follow up like, Hey, you know, how can we stay connected? Is it okay if I, you know, seeing you a letter from a person we just recently helped, or how can we stay connected and and And that’s a start, right? And to keep it a warm connection, right? Figure out ways to keep them engaged, to always keep my breast of the work that you’re doing. And I think the key point is to do this regardless. If there is a pending grant deadline, do this when there’s no grant deadline, right?

[00:09:28.64] spk_1:
I was gonna ask about that. Okay, So there’s no, there’s no even grant deadline yet. You’re just opening the channel before so that you’ve you’ve made the point in a couple of your blog posts or videos that, you know, don’t wait until two weeks before a deadline. You try to open a conversation, you’ve you set yourself up like maybe not definitely for failure, but you’ve You’ve made it a lot harder on everybody. So So this is before there isn’t even a day before There’s even a deadline posted.

[00:09:48.24] spk_0:
Exactly. And you know, sometimes if you do this work without a deadline, sometimes when a grant does come down the pipeline, don’t reach out to you and they’ll say, Hey, you know, we’ve been talking for the last six months. I think this is a good opportunity for you. Check it out and they’ll just forge you an opportunity. And that’s that’s even better, right? Because that means that your top of mind for them,

[00:11:03.44] spk_1:
it’s time for a break. Turn to communications. You know, the relationships that turn to has. These are examples. Examples. The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, CBS Market Watch, The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Those are the biggest. They have others, and they’ll make others others where you belong, where they can help place you so that when there’s a news hook that you belong in, they know who to call. They’ve got the relationships relationships. That’s how you get yourself positioned in the media that you want when you want it there at turn hyphen two dot c o. Now back to relationships with funders. You see the symmetry here you see, you see how it’s all connected with the relationship theme transcending. It’s resplendent with relationships. Unbelievable. So in that phone call or in these series of calls, as you’re keeping in touch with them, you’re trying to show them how your work aligns with their funding priorities. I mean, especially in that first. Like you said, a 15 minute phone call. You’re trying to hook them into what you do and how it overlaps with what they fund, right?

[00:11:19.94] spk_0:
Exactly. And I think when people go wrong is that they just they’re just so excited just to share all the work that they’re doing and they make it about them. But you know, these social, corporate friends, this is not altruistic. Giving is like it’s a reason why they’re investing in you is because you’re aligning with what they need to do. So always to keep the funder in mind and making sure that you are aligning to what they are looking for.

[00:11:46.94] spk_1:
And then over time, as you’re keeping in touch, is it okay to email them when you maybe have a big success? Or I don’t know, uh, email them announcements. Maybe about a couple of new board members. I mean, is that kind of stuff appropriate? Is that is that a good way to be keeping in touch with them?

[00:12:00.54] spk_0:
Exactly. Right. Exactly right. Press releases, uh, update new things that are happening. That’s always good to kind of keep them in loop. I discourage people from including them on your mass newsletter distribution list. Um, that’s a big no, no, definitely any personalized communication. If you want to extract information from your newsletter, that’s fine. But let it be personal. Let it be from the executive director. Uh, I know I personally have small when I’ve received stuff in the mail. Like I’ve received pictures of those that we’ve helped with a little handwritten letter in crayon. Hi. Thank you so much for the grant. That’s a tear jerker. And a lot of times I would put them up in my office. I was just going to say

[00:12:43.05] spk_1:
that. I bet you put them up

[00:12:44.01] spk_0:
in your office. I put my office

[00:12:45.78] spk_1:
crayon letters from, like, a seven or eight year old.

[00:12:50.24] spk_0:
Yeah, put them up in my office and, you know, there you go There on my mind. 3 65. So, um, getting something in the mail, you know who gets stuff in the mail anymore, right? So it would stand out. I’d say, Wow, it’s a package on my desk. What is that? And it really made a difference. So anyway, that you can engage them, whether mailing something or be email not too often, but when you really feel like there’s something significant that you’d like to share,

[00:13:50.94] spk_1:
so it’s not really that uncommon. I mean, it’s not really that different than keeping in touch with individual donors, you know? All right, So you’re saying you know, you wouldn’t include them on your in your e newsletter mail list? Okay, that’s that’s an exception. But you know, your major donors, like you’re inside individual donors, you keep in touch with them. You build relationships with them for when the time comes that you are going to be asking them. I mean, these are all strategic relationships. They’re not like you said. They’re not altruistic. Uh, you know, there’s a purpose behind these, but it sounds parallel to individual relationship building.

[00:13:54.74] spk_0:
It is okay. It is very parallel, and it’s so odd. I know I know a lot of fun reasons that are like, really good at engaging with individual donors, and I tell them like that that’s just not my jam. And then I think about it like, but there’s really a lot of like you could really apply to say, strategy. So that doesn’t mean that, uh, you know, it’s it’s necessarily a difficult thing. It’s just you just have to do it right? Like how it with a strategy and apply it

[00:15:11.54] spk_1:
because even Bank of America is made of people. Yeah, right. I mean, you’re you’re a person. You have feelings you like to be kept in touch with. You know, you like to get warm, soft, fuzzy, You know, things in the mail, like you’re saying so. You know, even Bank of America is made of people, so connect, connect on a personal level. All right. All right. So then let’s just follow that that relationship through a little bit. So now let’s suppose there is a grant application deadline Now it’s I don’t know how. How far in advance do we find out about these things? Like, three months or six months? Random varies. Okay. All right. So you find out now there’s an application. Three months, three months. You’ve got three months, but you’ve got a relationship with the with the company. Um, what do you do? You pick up the phone and say, Well, you know, can I apply or do you You just apply or you can leverage. How do you leverage your relationship?

[00:15:14.20] spk_0:
You pick up the phone, you send an email. Hi, Sally. We just saw that you guys have in our p available or a great opportunity available. And it’s due in June. Whatever. Whatever. We’re definitely interested in applying. This is the program that we’re looking for funding for. What do you think? Do you think this would be a good fit? Thank you so much for your time. I know your time is super, super precious, and you’re super busy. But thank you for your time. And any insight that you can provide will be very helpful.

[00:16:06.54] spk_1:
Okay. Okay. Um and then you go ahead. I mean, you got to follow. You gotta follow all the details. You make the point somewhere that if it says font size 12 and you do font size 11.5, you’re putting yourself at risk. Exactly. Okay. And then your work, of course, is preparing. You know, you gotta get budgets and referrals, and you gotta You gotta follow the follow all the guidelines.

[00:16:28.04] spk_0:
Yeah, well, a lot of our work, we’re unique at thinking and great consulting because we cover all aspects of great seeking from beginning to end. Uh, we do the nonprofit consulting to strengthen your organization, so you submit a strong proposal. We do, the research will go and find a good opportunities Will do the actual writing what you’re referring to. And we actually do the evaluation support. So we’ll evaluate the program. Um, at the end of the program, a lot of nonprofit leaders have to form four different relationships just to get all of that done. Um, but our team actually has people on staff to do all of those things, So we make it really easy for nonprofit leaders.

[00:16:52.04] spk_1:
We were talking about grants, grant application, But how do how does it vary if it’s if it’s sponsorship,

[00:18:04.34] spk_0:
uh, sponsorships? It’s And it’s weird because it’s changing with sponsorships. Before, It used to be just a marketing spin, right? It was awareness, and I’m talking about corporate funders. It was just bringing awareness to a brand, right, Um and it was tied to kind of like, you know how many people are going to see us and you know, the quality of the target market that we’re engaging and all that and I find that, like, sponsorships are getting more like grants now, like they want impact. They want, um, outcomes and objectives and all of that. So they’re kind of like a hybrid, so to say. But grants are definitely just, um, very structured. Just the classic K. You know, what is your mission? What is your program? What is your budget? What you’re hoping to achieve? How are you going to measure success? The application for a sponsorship, I would say, would most likely and again these lines are blurring, not be as intensive, although they do vary by thunder. Um, but, um, yeah, so I would say that they, for the most part not as intensive. But I find them getting a little more intense as far as asking very similar related questions.

[00:18:17.34] spk_1:
Are you seeing a lot of companies that want employee engagement as a part of sponsorship agreements?

[00:19:12.94] spk_0:
Absolutely. So the employee engagement pieces key and what that looks like is having employees opportunities for employees to come out and volunteer with a non profit organization. Or sometimes it’s the exact opposite. There’s some corporate funders that won’t even give to your nonprofit if it isn’t recommended by an employee or former employee is not, you know, um, active on the board or volunteering, or that they will see kind of employee recommendations before they give or give a preference. Or sometimes they’ll even be a question. They’re like, Do you have some of our employees that are engaging with your nonprofit like, What is their role? And a lot of those questions are optional, but some, um, won’t even give unless it’s like referred to employees. So employing instrument is key. And I think a lot of nonprofits overlooked at because that is something that corporate funders value. But sometimes nonprofits don’t always have the capacity to engage

[00:19:46.34] spk_1:
right, You know, if it’s a sizable company, I mean, they want maybe hundreds of employees engaging in a volunteer capacity or like I’ve heard of, you know, maybe stuffing backpacks or, uh, if it’s, uh, it’s a soup kitchen or something, you know, then then there’s ability for cooking and serving and an administrative work as well. But it could be like you’re saying. I mean, it could be a capacity thing like you just you may not have the capacity to manage the number of employees that they want to have volunteering.

[00:19:56.84] spk_0:
Exactly, because, I mean, you need a volunteer manager. You need to you know, it has to be a good experience for the corporate sponsor.

[00:20:28.84] spk_1:
All right, So you you got to manage capacity to think about what’s appropriate. But on the other hand, you know, it could be a small It might be a small local company where, you know, maybe they just have, like, 20 employees, and they want to send half of them, you know, once a month to spend five hours or something. So maybe you can Maybe you can accommodate 10 employees for five hours twice a month. Okay. Think about. All right. Um, what do you What do you say you mentioned the l. A y. The letter of inquiry or interest? What do you What are you saying in an l O I

[00:21:37.64] spk_0:
so L o I, um some some funders will give specific instructions on how to respond. It’s almost like a mini grant, right? Um, others are just kind of open ended. Like, hey, just send us an l o I. And so for the open ended alloys, usually it’s just a brief summary of your organization when I say brief, I mean brief. It is not. A whole historical layout of your organization is very brief just to give them some contacts for you to start talking about your actual program. So once you give a brief overview of your organization, give a brief overview of the project very succinctly and talk about how your project can potentially in line with a lot of the great work that, um, the funder is doing. Depending on who the front er is. You know, you may want to end it with, you know something to to make you stand out or really aligned with what the fund is looking for. But in essence, that is what l. Y looks like.

[00:23:39.04] spk_1:
It’s time for Tony’s Take two podcast pleasantries. I’m enjoying sending the podcast pleasantries, which at times have been podcast pleasantries. But they’re not today. These are the ones that have survived the pleasantries because, you know, it makes me nostalgic for the studio days when there were live listener love, affiliate affections and podcast pleasantries. Yes, the Studio days with Sam the podcast pleasantries are the only ones that survived. Uh, the other audiences, uh, Well, I cast off. It’s not that they not that they departed. I cast them off the podcast pleasantries. And I mean the affiliate affections and the live listener love in that order. So I’m I took the initiative. And what remains is our biggest audience. The podcast audience. You? Yes. You listening right this minute. I’m sending pleasantries to you. I’m grateful you’re a listener. How much plainer can I make it? And I don’t know. Yeah, I’m enjoying sending these podcasts pleasantries. They may end. I’m not sure. I’m not sure when the podcast pleasantries will end. Let’s just Let’s just go with it. See how it feels. Weak, Too weak. I think that’s the the best strategy not to make any commitments, long term or otherwise. Pleasantries to you, our podcast, listeners. Thanks for being with me. That is. Tony, take two. We’ve got Boo Koo, but loads more time for relationships with funders with shaven Richardson. Let’s go back to where you You are submitted your grant application. Now you’re waiting. Mhm. Mm. Can you leverage your relationship that you that you have with the with the funders to ask? How was it received? How does it. Look, What am I? What are our chances Look like, What can you do after you’ve submitted the application? Hopefully by the deadline. If you didn’t make it by the deadline, you’re

[00:24:31.74] spk_0:
out, right? Yeah, exactly. They hold fast to the deadline. I would say. I mean, this is very a really difficult question to answer, because while an application is being reviewed, you don’t want the appearance that you’re trying to sway a prog program. Managers mind or influence it while it’s pending. So oftentimes, um, if you check in, they won’t respond because they’ll say we’ll get back to you after X y z deadline. And that’s it. So for some, it’s it’s sitting. Wait, Um, if you’re fortunate to have some type of in and get some insight, then that that that’s just pure fortune because you definitely want to have the appearance that you’re trying to influence or get a ahead while they’re in the process of reviewing applications.

[00:24:45.92] spk_1:
Okay, so the decision is supposed to be made based strictly on the application

[00:25:14.14] spk_0:
at that point. Yeah, because, you know, it’s it’s a competitive thing, right? So, you know, you can ask all the questions you want prior to submitting, right? Build all the relationships you want. Um, once that deadline hits, they have all the applications in, um, they’re in the process of reviewing the applications, so you almost have to allow that to go. But if you do find someone that says, Hey, I was in the room and it gave great feedback or with the face to it, like that’s just that’s just a blessing, because that that definitely doesn’t happen.

[00:25:45.74] spk_1:
Okay, Okay. So don’t don’t don’t overreach like then you’re then you’re taking advantage of the relationship, and that’s obviously a negative. Okay, um but it sounds like you would encourage folks to to definitely be in touch during the application process while you’re if you’re not sure about what, How to answer a question or, you know, as you’re preparing the application, it’s it’s fine to be in touch,

[00:26:20.74] spk_0:
of course, and I would even take it a step further. I would even say, Don’t submit an application if you have not had some type of outreach or connection with someone in the office. I mean, really like like we call it submitting a cold app, just submitting it blind you’ve never had a conversation with anyone in the office, there’s no connection. The most likely look at you and they say, Well, who is this person? All right, Well, maybe we want to prove it now because we need to get to know them better. Maybe they will reapply, and we’ll consider it then. So I would definitely say before you even think about submitting an application to have some type of connection, some type of outreach with the thunder. First,

[00:26:38.04] spk_1:
let’s switch to the the private foundation side. Is it very different relationship

[00:27:59.94] spk_0:
wise? I think it’s the same relationship wise. I think access and capacity is different. Uh, there’s some foundations that have, um, our all volunteer led. They don’t have paid staff, right, So you may not be able to get someone on the phone to talk to. They may have board meetings once a quarter, Um, and you just have to submit and wait till they meet, right? And so the capacity is limited, But then you have other foundations that are very, very friendly and very open to talking to people and encourage the outreach and have the time and the resources available so It depends on capacity. I know that covid and working from home change things a little bit as far as capacity. Uh, you know, before we might have been able to get, um, folks on the phone when they were in the office. But now that their home, it’s like, um, they have a bigger workload now because of shifts in, you know, staffing and different things that have changed. So getting someone on the phone might be harder, because now they have so many applications to manage, right? Because every nonprofit needs money, especially now in the middle of a pandemic. So, you know, maybe when they were in the office, people endemic, they might have had some time to have a conversation with you. But now that they’re working from home, they might be down a staff member. They have more applications. Their capacity may not be the same.

[00:28:20.04] spk_1:
All right, so yeah, I guess you would start with the website to try to figure out whether they accept calls, right? And inquiries by phone, like you were saying on the corporate side. But after that, just I mean, if if the website doesn’t really say, just reach out and try and see what see what happens.

[00:29:23.14] spk_0:
Yeah, and I will also say not to to make it more complicated. There’s some foundations out there that don’t have websites. No way to connect with them. Um, you might get a phone number, right? Like there’s foundations that don’t have websites. And so that’s why sometimes beyond just your normal a Google search. Um, sometimes I will say, you know, go to a great writing firm or nonprofit consulting firm. And if they’re willing to do some research for you, um, go that route because I know we have, you know, just relationships with funders and people who worked with that don’t have websites. But we have, you know, the connection there and were able to kind of, like, you know, make an introduction or do something, and we have our ways of finding out who sits on the board and you know how to make those connections. And so, you know, try to do as much as you can on your own. But I would always say, like if you need help, like, don’t be afraid to kind of reach out for help, especially if it’s one time support, right to get of insight on opportunities are available out there and the relationships that you need to build.

[00:29:54.74] spk_1:
Okay, Yeah. A foundation that doesn’t have a website. Sounds pretty closed. I mean, they’re not even They’re not even telling publicly what their funding priorities are. So you have to drill down and do research. What about the, um Well, it used to be the foundation center. Now, is it candid the the, uh, the service that they have, which is a subscription service for grants for foundation research? Yeah, F c. I forget what it used to be called FC Something

[00:29:58.78] spk_0:
etcetera online

[00:30:08.24] spk_1:
foundation center online is that? I mean, I know, I know listeners have to subscribe to it, but is that a valuable, um, research tool?

[00:30:15.94] spk_0:
Absolutely. A lot of those those foundations. Um, some are have websites, some don’t. Right. Um and so using as a resource, you can always pull up the funders they linked to nine nineties. So you’ll see an address and a phone number and a list of board directors. And there’s a lot of insightful information, so that’s definitely a good resource.

[00:30:42.34] spk_1:
What about on the federal funder side talking about a federal agency. What’s the relationship building like potential there?

[00:30:48.34] spk_0:
Yes, that’s a good question. So it’s kind of different, right? It’s not as, um personal as far as sending emails. Hey, this is what we’re doing. It’s more informational. And so every foe. And that’s the opportunity announcements for federal grants, mainly. Yeah, we

[00:31:08.73] spk_1:
have. Sorry. What the heck is a PFOA

[00:32:25.64] spk_0:
federal opportunity announcement? You’ll hear it reference that you’ll also hear RFP but this RFP saying for I don’t know. Sorry, guys. Yes. Okay, so, um, so with that, you will always see a list of everything you need for the grant. What to include? How to submit. Um, and usually will have multiple documents sometimes. Um, if you go to their website, you’ll see frequently asked questions. Always attend. The webinar always have the opportunity to ask questions during the webinar if you didn’t attend a lot of times to have replaced. So it’s good to attend that first. And I say this because they always have a contact of a person to reach out to. If you have questions, you want to be able to reach out to that person. If you have questions but asking questions in a way that you’re kind of sharing more information about what you all are doing and building a relationship that way, like having a person that you can go to to ask questions. The reason why I heavily recommend reading the RFE in its entirety and listening to the Webinar because you do not want to ask questions that have already been answered. I don’t like that they don’t like that. You’re not demonstrating that you’re listening or paying attention or doing anything right. So having that person that you can ask questions is away. I mean, I don’t want to use the relationship, but it’s a way that so that they know that you’re serious, right?

[00:32:45.14] spk_1:
It’s a more professional. It’s more. I mean, these are all professional relationship, but this one’s a little more arms length.

[00:32:46.94] spk_0:
Yeah, more arms lane.

[00:32:48.64] spk_1:
Okay.

[00:32:49.23] spk_0:
Yeah, no sending. You know, emails of the latest updates. Like, you know, none of that. Nothing in the mail like it’s a professional relationship for sure.

[00:33:26.14] spk_1:
Okay. Okay. Um let’s see what happens when, uh, when you get turned down? Suppose you have the Suppose you have the relationship. I don’t care whether it’s corporate or private or federal, well, federal. You have some kind of relationship, but whatever you get turned down, But you do know somebody at the at the thunder you’re you call sobbing, you’re not sobbing, but you’re disappointed. You know what? What do you What do you recommend when you get the rejection?

[00:34:15.04] spk_0:
Yeah, well, you know being rejected is never easy. It’s often disappointing. I say that that that’s an opportunity to position yourself for your next wind, right? Um, I always ask for feedback on the application and some things that we could do better to strengthen application next time. I think that’s very invaluable to get that sort of insight and be able to resubmit. But taking consideration, the insight that was shared and also just, um, keep on applying for other grants. And I’m going to speak to the emotional piece because I think sometimes it discourages nonprofit leaders to a point where they lose their steam right, and they don’t want to keep applying. But I will say rejections do happen. Um, keep applying to the next great opportunity, see it as a learning lesson and see it’s an opportunity for the funding to get to know you better, and for you to get to know the funder better and just be more aligned with what they’re looking for.

[00:34:39.34] spk_1:
Okay, so it’s it’s good to reach out and get the feedback.

[00:35:52.54] spk_0:
I’m not. And with federal grants, I’m just going to add this. Um oftentimes, reviewer, um, well, provide comments on the proposal and know that you can always ask for those comments. Okay. And that’s feedback as well. So that’s how you get feedback for a federal grant for foundation grant. It’s Hello. We received the decline letter. Would love to get any feedback that you can provide to improve our chances for applying in the future or to be better line now. You may not always get a response because, especially with corporate funders, um, you know, they don’t ever want to put it out there like they’re giving one non profit and advantage over another. So sometimes they may just say if they do reply, they’ll say, Um, yeah, you know, you didn’t make it. You know, here’s the link if you want to apply it in the future, and so if you don’t get a response, don’t be surprised, but definitely try to get some insight. Okay?

[00:35:53.54] spk_1:
And you might have that relationship. Is it okay to pick up the phone to the person that you have the relationship with and ask them? That’s not overreaching it?

[00:36:05.03] spk_0:
Not at that point. It’s already been decisioned. Okay, Okay.

[00:36:08.33] spk_1:
What do you want to spend a little time talking about? I’ve been asking all the questions. What? What do you think? Relationship building wise. Haven’t we talked about that? You want listeners to know?

[00:37:10.43] spk_0:
I just want to emphasize the importance of doing. And I know that nonprofit leaders, executive directors, those that sits on sit on boards your time is stretched and we understand that, and we know it and there’s so many competing priorities. But I do recommend for nonprofit organizations to have a relationship building strategy. The top 20% of the folks on your list that you want to reach out to this year and focus on that 20% have a strategy in place. And it’s not only just calling and emailing, but also engaging in person when we’re able to write in the community right? That’s another way to build relationships and have those authentic connection. So I know it’s definitely sometimes not easy because there’s so many responsibilities. But it is definitely, definitely important. And it will take you much further than what you think.

[00:37:17.83] spk_1:
You practice yoga, right? Do does your Does your yoga practice inform your work? Is that impact your your work?

[00:37:48.73] spk_0:
I will say it keeps me ballots, right? Like I think everyone and I encourage nonprofit leaders and business owners alike to find something that keeps you balance. Because writing France, uh, is sometimes can be really stressful, right? It’s It’s a high pressure, deadline driven industry. Very cerebral. I’m fortunate I’m an introvert. So this this works very well for me, right? I am. I’m in the right profession for sure. Sound

[00:37:57.66] spk_1:
like an introvert?

[00:38:03.42] spk_0:
I don’t. I am. I am an extroverted introvert. That

[00:38:15.82] spk_1:
sounds a little a little oxymoronic. What is an extroverted introvert? You are one. But how do you It depends on the setting. Is that like you? If there’s a microphone in front of you, then you’re an extrovert. But if you’re at a party, you’re an introvert. What? How does that work?

[00:39:06.82] spk_0:
Well, what it is if you’re an introverted person you refuel yourself by doing introverted activities. So if it’s being by yourself or reading and writing, that’s what you reveal yourself. And then when you do extroverted activities, it drains you right. You feel like you have to kind of come back to your reading and writing to refill yourself. Extroverts are the exact opposite. They reveal themselves by interacting with people and talking and began doing things. And then if they’re doing something that’s like, quiet and reading a book, it drains them. So you really have to identify what drains you and what feels you and I know being introvert fuels me, and I do like doing extroverted things. But when I do them, I am completely a exhausted. If I’m speaking somewhere, I have to plan, uh, the next morning to just decompress and do some yoga and some introverted activities to kind of re fuel myself. Before I kind of get back in the mix of things

[00:39:20.82] spk_1:
you ride horses to.

[00:39:22.75] spk_0:
I do

[00:39:24.72] spk_1:
so that’s another. I guess that’s an introverted active right. That’s a solo. I mean, you could be just one of the person or something, but that’s pretty much a solo activity is,

[00:39:43.22] spk_0:
you know, and I look at the things that I do like to do, and they tend to be so activities. It’s just This is very strange, although I I like people. I have a great team, were really well connected. But I do know that I enjoy horseback riding and yoga and doing things like that.

[00:39:47.22] spk_1:
All right, the extroverted introvert. I understand now. It’s what you get, which you derive their energy from exactly. Okay, so now you’re exhausted talking

[00:40:06.41] spk_0:
to me for a No, I’m good. I think this was This was good. This is a nice balance for me. I think. You know, if I was doing a keynote somewhere, I’d be totally exhausted. That’s different. Yeah,

[00:40:09.13] spk_1:
non profit radio is not exhausting. No,

[00:40:11.36] spk_0:
no, it’s good.

[00:41:05.21] spk_1:
Thank you, Stephen. Thanks very much for having us. Sheldon Richardson. She’s at Shavon Richardson, and the company is at Think and Inc grants dot com Next week, Jeanne Takagi returns with Build Your best Better board, Bud. Maybe we’ll leave out the bud. That’s sexist. Keep that. Keep the butt out. It’ll just be build your best Better Board and Jeanne Takagi, always a pleasure to have him look forward to that. That’s your next week’s show. All right, if you missed any part of this week’s show, I beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com. We’re sponsored by turn to communications, PR and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission. Turn hyphen two dot c o. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff Shows Social Media

[00:41:08.33] spk_3:
is by Susan Chavez

[00:41:09.70] spk_0:
Mark Silverman

[00:41:17.31] spk_3:
is our Web guy, and this music is by Scott Stein. Thank you for that affirmation. Scotty, be with me next week for nonprofit radio. Big non profit ideas for the other 95% Go

[00:41:38.31] spk_1:
out and be great. Mm, yeah.

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