Grant Pros + Bay Views = #GPAConf2017

I don’t know about you, but I tend to go in to a post-conference social media coma. Something has to give between coming off the professional development high and the dive back into the day-to-day low. And if you follow me, you know that I like to live tweet my conference experiences. It’s a fun, interactive way for me to talk about notes. And I needed them to write this post.

Like so many attendees, I focused on trying to fill in my knowledge gaps this year. I could have spent another week attending sessions because there was so much to choose from. For me this meant spending quite a bit of time trying to understand the recipient point of view, like:

  • The details to and not include when submitting a budget proposal. Having worked in Federal grants for so many years, details are the norm. But I hadn’t considered what adjustments you have to make for foundation requirements, especially for capital projects. In good news for my transferrable skills – Cheryl Kester’s (@KesterGroup) advice aligned similarly to any corporate budget I’ve developed.
  • Board responsibilities are expansive. I haven’t served on a board in a long time, so Debbie DiVirgilio’s (@Grantconsultant) session served as a reminder that board members take on fiscal responsibility for an organization. Boards also need training, preferably annually, on their responsibilities. Then I learned about a whole other level of “volun-telling” from the participants. One person shared that they had been elected by a nonprofit board – without having been asked. They found out in a passing conversation.
  • You bring your culture with you. Of course, I attended the session on creating an individual professional development plan based on the GPC – I work for a training and solutions company! I loved the approach presented by Julie Assel (@ACgrants). I was also reminded how hard it can be to address how and when you bring your #culture with you – especially when writing or consulting for someone with a different background than you.

I also had the opportunity to watch our own Scott Boozer (@leadingwithfun) deliver a session on Dealing with Conflict. I was glad that Management Concepts was able to share this know-how with such an engaged audience, committed to their own professional development. Plus – anyone working in grants has some sort of group dynamic. Conflicts are inevitable.

So now that I’ve caught my breath, I can focus on finishing up the relaunch of Managing Federal Grants and Cooperative Agreements (December) and Applying for Federal Grants and Cooperative Agreements (January). That includes incorporating some of my takeaways from #GPAConf2017.

Written by:
Erica Preston
Grants & Assistance
Media Type:

Leading Contracting Organizations
Federal Spotlight: Amy Rogers