The Consultant’s Tool Kit: Have clips, will travel

3 Aug

I admit,  I am a tad neurotic. I don’t particularly like surprises, especially when I’m on a deadline. So I learned some time ago that when you are packaging a grant, you want to know that you have the right supplies on hand. I also learned that most of my clients just don’t have my personal shopping list in mind when they order office supplies. Go figure.

To remedy this and to not be scrambling for something to bind a grant or the right size of envelope, I created a Grant Packaging Kit. Most everything fits in a zip lock bag which I toss in my laptop bag, “just in case.” I like having tools I know will work. It’s a time saver and a sanity saver. I hope this list will be helpful to you. Whether you are a consultant creating your own portable tool kit or a grant writer employed in an agency, having these items handy will just plain make your job easier:

Bull Dog Clips of Various Sizes: Those black and silver spring clips are a grant writer’s best friend. Just make sure that you have a variety of sizes from small to medium to large and the seldom used, but sometimes desperately needed jumbo.

Rubber Bands: Get the big ones. By that I don’t mean thick, I mean big around so that they go around an 8 1/2″ x 11″ stack of paper without buckling it. I like size 117.

Post-It Notes: Many government funders require that the original copy be designated as such. You don’t want to have to use someone’s novelty Post-It declaring that “Today was a total waste of make up” because you can’t find a plain old yellow one.

Blank, Writeable CD and Jewel Cases: Many government funders require that you turn in an eletronic copy, and this means burning a CD. Maybe your client has some, maybe they don’t. Bring some in case.

Black Magic Marker: To write on the CD.

9″ x 12″ Manilla Envelopes and 10″ x 13″ or Larger Envelopes: You would be surprised how quickly an office can go through these things.

Fed Ex Letter Packaging and Airbill: See above. The last thing I want to do at 6:30 when I am trying to make a 7pm pick up is to have to look for a Fed Ex location with supplies because we are out. I just want to drive by the drop box and go.

That’s my basic list. I’d love to hear what your “must have” grant packaging supplies are.

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