What I’ve learned from self-publishing my book is for me to stop trying to do everything myself and get help. The same applies toward grant writing.
Grant writers need writing skills to complete a grant application. Yet, there are other parts to an application besides the summaries, narratives, and other written sections. Grant writers should take advantage of not knowing everything and ask for help.
For example, it is better to use a photographer when providing photographs. Clear, professional images can be a great way to highlight the application. Also, the grant application may require specific performance measurements. Instead of learning what these are, the grant writer could contact an expert in these measurements.
Another example could be when restoring an historic building. Sometimes an historian familiar with the time period and restorations can provide details that highlight knowledge of the project.
Still another example is when looking for grant opportunities. Searching the internet for a grant takes time. It is faster and more efficient to use a grant database that someone developed having exact parameters.
Of course, grant writers could rely on the nonprofit’s expertise. Yet, I found it is sometimes better to get information from an outside source. This gives a different perspective and allows for more diversity in the information. Using other sources can add detail I do not have.
Also, information from an outside source can create a grant application that looks more professional. This makes foundation board members happy. We want the money people to be happy.
Finally, I like to contact people with different expertise than myself. It lets me learn something new, explore other fields of community engagement, and gives me the chance to meet new people.
Many authors who self-publish have learned to outsource (like me). Grant writers should, too.