Inheriting a Blank Slate as a Grants Office

You sign a new client that is brand new to the grant seeking world…

You are hired as the first Grants Office for an organization with no grant history…

These are both situations that are very common in the experiences among #grantchat community members where you know that you are working with a blank slate and can prepare accordingly.

On the other hand, many #grantchat community members have experienced situations where they are surprised by how much of a “blank slate” the grant office is that they step into as a consultant or employee. An office where there is little or no documentation. An office where there is not a connection to programs or leadership to ensure that the direction of the grant strategy is in alignment with the strategic plan.

So what is a grant professional to do? Both situations – either understanding and choosing to create a grants office from scratch, or inheriting what is actually a blank slate of a grants office unexpectedly, there are some key best practices that were highlighted during #grantchat this week.

First, we as grant professionals need to consider where there could be current weaknesses or issues if it is inheriting a pre-existing grant office that now presents as a “blank slate.” The most common #Grantchat community member fears for potential weaknesses in these situations included:

Blank Slate Grant Office Fears

Blank Slate Grant Office Fears

Blank Slate Grant Office Fears

Blank Slate Grant Office Fears

However, we as the dedicated, well-trained, and excellent grant professionals that we are, are also those that when faced with the blank slate grant office, quickly create a plan, connect with leadership, and plug ourselves into the culture of the organization to quickly ascertain the right strategy to move their grant seeking efforts forward. Some of the key steps that our #grantchat colleagues take in such situations are:

Creating a Grant Office Creating a Grant Office Creating a Grant Office Creating a Grant Office What else frightens you about inheriting a “blank slate” of a grant office? Or how do you work to create structure and an effective grants office when provided the opportunity? Share your thoughts, related blog posts, and other resources with us in the comments section below.


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