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Rules to Communicate By

February 11, 2013

Darts_bullseyeAs former foundation CEO Martin Teitel reminds us in The Ultimate Insider’s Guide to Winning Foundation Grants, success in grantseeking boils down to two things: great organizations doing great work; and effective communications.

What does the latter entail? Teitel offers these three easy-to-follow rules:

Be Clear

  • Eliminate jargon
  • Write for your real (as opposed to imagined) audience -- i.e., funders who don't know your organization that well
  • Leave out the math and formulas

Be Concise

  • Not one word more than the length specified in the funder's guidelines
  • Use a spear, not a club -- i.e., make your point and move on
  • Revise, revise, revise

Be Compelling

  • Share your enthusiasm for the work you and your colleagues are doing
  • Base your request for funding on facts, not hopes or wishes
  • Put your organization's story at the center of your appeal

Sound advice. What would you add to the list? Use the comments section to share your thoughts....

-- Mitch Nauffts

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