Grantsmanship as a Profession
To the public, grant writing is viewed as a technical skill that can be acquired with a few days training. Only to the dedicated professional is the activity that occurs between seeker and funder understood as well-defined process with accountability to the funder, the fund seeker and the consumer.
Good grant professionals work between grant seeker and funder, using their skills to ensure a match between the seeker’s capacity and the funder’s mission. Good grant professionals conduct research and needs assessments, engage in strategic planning, fiscal planning, technical writing and evaluation, all within an ethical framework.
The exchange of charitable dollars for goods/services represents a national gross product of more than $1 billion annually. Further, experts posit that more than 100,000 individuals serve as “brokers” between grant seekers and grant funders. Commonly referred to as grant writers, these “brokers” require no special training or education. They are not regulated by an authoritative body nor held to ethical standards by their peers.
It is imperative that as the field emerges, it does so with the consumer situated front and center. Moreover, it is essential for the nonprofit community, as well as the community-at-large, to understand the role grant professionals play in the overall health of a nonprofit organization, and the power it has over the outcomes of it’s fund-seeking.
To learn more about the Grant Professionals Association, visit their website at: www.GrantProfessionals.org.