Scenario 1: You didn’t get the grant
It doesn’t stop there. Now’s the time to tell people and bring your stakeholders back in for a pow wow about what to do next.
Contact – the funding body and find out what you did and didn’t do to meet their needs and ensure the feedback is recorded somewhere in the vicinity of your copy of the final application so you can draw upon it next time.
Celebrate – particularly if this was a big application. Find a way to celebrate with the people who helped to pull this together. It’s a bummer but not all is lost, you still have an excellent team to work on the next one with.
Pause – give yourself just a little break to stop, reflect and create. Stopping helps to build the creativity you will need to think yourself to the next stage. But you don’t have time to stop? Set the timer on your phone for 10mins. Sit somewhere comfortable and safe and close your eyes. Every time your mind races bring yourself back to that moment. See. You did it. (Don’t smirk, just do it).
Scenario 2: YOU DID IT !
Check – the funding amount and the terms. Does it align to your application? Chances are it is less funding, and there may even be a request to deliver more. Don’t jump in. Bring your stakeholders together to discuss. Check the contract and ensure you can deliver. If it’s a large amount (i.e. over $50K consider having a solicitor look over the contract, if it’s over $250K consider this a must).
Capacity – has anything changed? Does your organisation still have the capacity to deliver? With some funding applications taking months to assess chances are things have changed. If you cannot deliver, and you can’t see any way to turn it around talk to the funding body immediately.
Notify – tell your inner circle first. The information may be under embargo (that is you can’t share it), check with the funding body before you scream it all over Facebook.
Celebrate – You deserve this. You know what to do
Contracts, plans and KPIs – put all of the groundwork in place you need to get the ball rolling
Recruitment – if recruitment is part of your funding expectations get to market. NOTE: Never employ someone because you are in a hurry to start the program and haven’t found a candidate that you are entirely happy with. If your program is delayed due to the recruitment process keep your funding body in the loop.
Clarify – get in touch with the funding body to clarify expectations from reporting to delivery and beyond. Ask them what would be a really good outcome for them and plan to deliver on that. Remember, if this is government funding there will be an MP or Minister who would love to have their picture taken with your successfully implemented program.
Set milestones – set your milestones and make them clear to your team (including your stakeholders and committee). Build a collective understanding about what success means and identify how you’ll be celebrating that at each milestone.
Deliver – above all deliver. Things happen – we all know that and in these unusual times a lot more things happen than ever before. If you come into problems tell your funding body contact – before you call clearly identify the problem, how it may impact the required outcomes and what you intend to do about it. Above all, don’t hide it and hope the problem will go away as more likely it will get bigger.
Media – keep the media informed along the way so they can continue to do stories for you.
Measurement – grants aren’t always designed with metrics in mind that mean anything to your community. Know what matters, know what you want to measure and work out how in the early days. That way you can build on your data and really know what impact you are having. This solid data will really help any future application you will put together (and also build your credibility among your stakeholders)
That brings us to the end of the DIY Guide to Grant Writing series – want to go to the next level with your applications? Contact us for more information on our grant writing course.
Part 1 Finding the funding source
Part 2 Get your Game face on and
Part 3 Your funding toolkit
Part 4 Supporting data
Part 5 The funding concept
Part 6 Writing the application
Part 7 Grant writing pitfalls
Part 8 Raising awareness
Part 9 Your stakeholders matter
Kerry Grace – Evolve Network Founder and CEO