Thursday, April 28, 2016

Remember Your First Draft Will Automatically Energize the Charity

Often to get the staff excited about a grant project you need to deal with their objections and then implement procedures which make it fun for them to work with you.
Over time I've developed a couple of strategies which work for me given my look, my knowledge, and my experience.  Nevertheless, I think they will work for you too if you apply them carefully and adapt them to your personality.

Arial video of my community from a new build RC helicopter with Zenmuse H3-3D gimbal at Kite Hill, Laguna Niguel, CA
Arial video of my community from a newly built RC helicopter with Zenmuse H3-3D gimbal at Kite Hill, Laguna Niguel, CA
The first thing to do is to find a project that your client really want to run and implement.  If the staff is not thoroughly excited about the new program they are seeking to develop, then it is harder to get them to take action in a crisis when you need a quick rewrite or an improved photo for the application cover page.
By distributing the Project Innovator form ahead of time, I encourage the staff to come up with the projects they are excited about. To access a blank copy of the Project Innovator form I give to my clients, click on this link here
I also pay attention to (and articulate) my level of enthusiasm too.  If I think the new program is a dud...I won't be quite so eloquent in promoting it either.

Even if you do not totally like the proposed program, there is still - usually - some element of it that you can concentrate on that will make it exciting and powerful for your to focus your best attention on it.
Next, I like to write the first draft for them.  Once they see the whole thing on paper, I have found the charity will make near heroic efforts to add additional text or seed in crucial information, information essential to really selling the project to the funder.

In addition, it is often easy for staff and administrators to become somewhat bored by their own institutions and existing programs.  I have found that reading the first draft, which I have created for them, often energizes them by providing a fresh, inspirational look that lifts their spirits.  This is particularly true when the charity has experienced hard times in the past.

Helping the charity put its experience into a winning perspective can often improve organizational behavior across the board.  It's fun to watch as staff and administrators re-frame their institutional experience in a powerful and empowering manner. 

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