If you aced research papers in college and have a knack for words, grant writing can be a natural fit for you. However, your writing won't speak for itself. Whether you want to freelance or work for an agency, you have to slam dunk your interview first before you can get business rolling. By anticipating your interviewer's questions, you can highlight your best qualities and strengths to land a grant writing job.
What Is Your Writing Background?
If you're up for a grant writing position, be ready to talk about your past writing experience. Bring a portfolio of successful grants that you've written. If you do not have experience in grant writing, bring samples of research papers, published article clips or even a mock grant proposal so your interview can get a sense of your writing abilities.
How Many Successful Grants Have You Written and Who Funded Them?
If your resume demonstrates your experience in grant writing, you will be asked to elaborate on your past successful projects. This is your time to shine. Your interviewer might want to know what grants you obtained, who funded them, the length of the process and how well you collaborated with other team players. You don't want to brag, but it's important to be confident about your successes.
What Was Your Most Challenging Fund Raising Experience?
Your interviewer will want to know the dirt. Of course, it is not a good move to badmouth your previous employer. The key to discussing your most challenging fund raising experience is by stating the difficult situation and showing how you were able to rise above. If you are new to the field, you can discuss a challenging experience in another profession, which may be similar to the challenges faced in fundraising.
How Do You Handle Deadlines for Multiple Projects?
Sticking to deadlines is a major part of being a successful grant writer. In an interview, you might be asked to discuss your methods of staying on track of your projects. Scheduling meetings; coordinating with staff; writing proposals and adhering to deadlines requires organization. Show the interviewer and the agency that you have the brains and talent to secure grants for their cause.
Cooper Veeris holds a bachelor's degree in English from Fordham University and lives in New York City. In addition to contributing regularly to various websites as a writer, she has experience teaching different populations and age groups including early childhood, junior high and high school students, and adults living with mental illnesses.