Investing in Grants Professionals

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With a rock-star proposal writer on staff, why spend precious dollars priming the pump? The grant awards are rolling in and all is right with the world. But getting too comfortable with the successful status quo is risky.

Proposal development is stressful and over the years the job can wear away enthusiasm and energy. Investing in star staff members is always wise.

 

There are many ways to invest in your grants professional. Here are a few tips for administrators.

• Be sure the salary level reflects the demands of the work and the benefits the work brings to the organization and its beneficiaries.

• Proposal development requires input and involvement from many people within the organization. Be sure other staff within the organization understand their role in the process and their obligation to participate.

• Be sure the grants professional has up-to-date equipment, appropriate office space, and subscriptions to a high-quality funder database.

• Celebrate victories with lunch, cards, or some appropriate acknowledgement. And do the same for those times when the proposal doesn’t win the award. Show that you understand the effort made, and the emotional let-down of losing.

• Attending quality training and conferences helps staff members stay on top of their game, build professional connections, and reinvigorate their interest in the work. Think of professional development as an essential ingredient in the care and feeding of an important organizational resource.

You can bet that head-hunters have top grant professionals in their sights. The salary level certainly matters, but that’s not the only factor that keeps people in their job. Supporting and nurturing valuable staff resources is always wise. Think of investing in staff as part of investing in the accomplishment of your organization’s mission.

 

— Barbara Floersch, Chief of Training & Curriculum

 

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