Throw Out the Crystal Ball and Manage Your Grants Portfolio Like a Boss

In this information-packed, interactive session, attendees will learn to:
- Painlessly submit an annual grants budget that is both realistic and ambitious.
- Confidently communicate grant revenue results to board and leadership, knowing where you are, where you're going, and how you will get there.
- Go from pipe dream to pipeline and manage the grants cultivation funnel through data-driven decision making.

Talented grants professionals are the Swiss Army knives of development. To be successful, we must be equal parts sleuth, visionary, author, budget analyst, as well as program, project, and process manager, all with expert facility. We guide our organization and program staff to put a best foot forward, harnessing data, results, and narrative to tell a compelling story. Yet many of us struggle to clearly, confidently discuss the grants portfolio with staff and board leadership. Smaller organizations may lack a CRM and in larger organizations, responsibility for forecasting and tracking grants revenue may reside with finance, leaving the grants team "flying blind." Without a clear understanding of year over year trends, there may be misconceived perceptions that grants revenue is flat or declining, or an inconsistent approach to grant budgeting that results in unpredictable, unattainable goals.

In this session, we will:
- Prepare a simple tool to support data-driven budgeting, forecast cash flow, and track YTD performance.
- Create 2-3 customized dashboards to solve reporting challenges.
- Learn best practices for grants probability forecasting.
- Develop a Grant Opportunity Rubric to evaluate prospects.
- Use actions to keep the cultivation funnel on track.
- Practice strategies to promote accountability with internal partners.
- Inspire board support though call-to-action presentations.

GPC Competencies Addressed:
How to research, identify, and match funding resources to meet specific needs
Organizational development as it pertains to grant seeking


Kerri Kilbane is Assistant Director, Foundation Relations for Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, where she leads grant development for national arts and education programs. Her experience includes annual and leadership giving, corporate relations, and donor communications in advocacy, healthcare, education, and the arts. Kerri previously worked as a banker and business development officer for Chase and Citi. She has served on several boards in community health and arts organizations.