In life, you’re always looking for an “edge”—an advantage that enables you to cross the finish line first.

The same holds true for writing grant proposals. When writing for a competitive grant, you know you’re going up against other schools and districts that are eyeing the same funds.

So what competitive edge can you give yourself that will cause the reader to sit up, take notice, and think, “Wow, what a proposal!”

The answer is simple. And it is one that will not only take pressure off of you but also increase your chances of creating a proposal that knocks the socks off the reader.

That edge is time.

In other words, give yourself more time to conceive your project and write your proposal. I know that doesn’t sound incredibly exciting, but think of the edge it will give you.

With extra time, you can choose the grant that best fits your project. There are thousands of foundations to approach and many government grants to pursue. Make sure the goals of the grant you are writing for perfectly match the goals of the project you propose. After all, the most wonderfully written application will fail if it doesn’t match the grantor’s vision.

With extra time, you can create a more enticing project. You want your reader to think, “Wow! This community needs this project.” With more time, you can create a project that has wow factor. And that means you will have a better chance of getting it funded.

With extra time, you can gather the information you need to prove your project will succeed. Donors want to be confident that the projects they fund will be carried out with excellence. To shore up their confidence, assemble strong letters of commitment, well-written resumes, and a precise budget to show them that you and your team are ready to deliver what you’ve promised.

And finally, with extra time you can enjoy the grant-writing process much more and with much less pressure. And in that positive state, your talents will shine through onto the written page.

P.S. If you’re looking for more ideas on finding additional funding, be sure to sign up for our free monthly grants and funding newsletter. Each month, you’ll receive funding news, grant-writing tips, and information on grants you should know about. To sign up, click here.