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18. Your great new idea may not be so new, but still great January 29, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Another job idea, Networking.
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As I review these federal grants, it’s become clear the bimodal distribution in proposal quality.  Some organizations understand how to write, package and present a grant; others clearly do not.

And they don’t seem to realize that writing style and presentation radically affect how grant proposals are received.  REGARDLESS of the actual content and ideas.

Grant writing is telling a story.  You’ve got to set the hook immediately.  Draw the reader in.  Then keep them interested and excited.  While grants aren’t fiction, many aspects of writing fiction can be applied.

My idea – help grant submitters tell a better story.  Or tell their story better.



16. You snooze, you lose – getting paid for stuff you already know January 25, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Another job idea.
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I went scuba diving in the Solomon Islands about 10 years ago in a boat for 16.  We visited a few very remote villages and bartered with the folks there for beautiful carvings.

Children came up to us in awe and we taught them to do High-5’s.  The boys showed off their hunting prowess by shooting arrows into trees.  It was amazing to see life so simple.

I have an incredible scrimshaw that I got for a small bit of cash and 4 D cell batteries.  While a few small islands had running water, many kept a radio for communications, so batteries were a common barter.

After a good haggle for another item, I hemmed and hawed, and the carver just blurted out, “Hey – you snooze you lose!”  We all burst out laughing – where had he heard that term?  Another said, “Opportunity knocks.”  Then we realized that what they learned of the outside world came from visitors like us stopping by every few weeks to barter for carvings and fresh vegetables.  Just like we’d taught the kids to do High-5s.


15. Rewards for doing the work you agreed to do January 24, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Motivation.
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So I’m in grant reviewing hell.  Preparing for that meeting on the left.   I could do a quick crappy job, or do the right thing.  Perhaps, unfortunately for my weekend, I tend to do the right thing.

I’ve written grants myself, and I know how hard it is to develop a good plan, good hypotheses, and then explain exactly what you’re going to do if you get the money.  It’s not like the government hands over $3M for a fishing expedition – a research term for “we’re gonna look at a lot of different stuff that we haven’t identified yet and hope we figure out something useful.”  Those types of proposals don’t (usually) make it too far.

Other proposals are a joy to read!  Heavy scientific terms broken down into descriptive language that can teach a non-expert while simultaneously describing the work.  Flow is logical, the ideas are neat.  And if the grant writers do their jobs well, I can get really excited about the proposed project!  Clarity + readability + neat project = GOOD SCORE = $$$$$$.

You’d think they’d figure that out.


11. Internet Privacy and Social Media January 18, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Branding, Privacy, Social Networking.
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Facebook changed their privacy settings a few months ago, further restricting our ability to protect our personal information by 1) removing previous options to hide friends and pages, and 2) stashing previously accessible privacy options in non-logical places.

This has caused a backlash against Facebook, who attempts to justify the changes with inane arguments that mean nothing for privacy and everything to allow increased ad revenues, increased ability to mine for more email addresses, increased misunderstanding regarding default privacy settings, and the brand new feature that your information (profile, posts, etc.) can be searchable by search engines.


And I’m sharing all this deep and meaningful stuff about my next move in life with 6.8 billion people?


10. Showcasing (Bragging About) Your Expertise January 16, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Branding.
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Don't be afraid to scream, "I rock!"

I’ve had a strange problem with my email the last couple weeks and yesterday I finally solved it.  My “productivity ” of the day was to blog about it on my other blog.  That blog explores the basics of  solving Real Life problems. With, one might assume, actual Real Life problems.

So, to my problem. (Go ahead, make a smartass remark.  In a comment below.  I dare you. Heh heh.)

Anyway, I sent email from Gmail-address-A to a Yahoo group where I had registered with Gmail-address-A.  Yahoo rejected it back to me because IT ALLEGED I’d started sending emails to it from Gmail-address-B. But I hadn’t.

No matter what I tried, it *insisted* was sending from the wrong email address.  Grrrr.

But I had *proof* from my sent box and the messages’ headers!  But somehow, the Interwebs were screwing with me.


4. Brand yourself online – Social Media Resumes January 7, 2010

Posted by Lisa in All, Branding, Networking, Social Networking.
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I got a massage yesterday and my mind wandered on over to online personal branding.  (I know, I know, a massage is supposed to be relaxing.  However <shrugs> your mind ends up wandering where it will.)

Tomato Clownfish by yours truly

I wondered, is there a way to create a single point of contact online which (professionally) shows the whole me rather than maintaining separate personal and professional sites?

The line between the two is blurring – in interviews we chat about common interests to break the ice – why can’t I present my common interests (like scuba and photography) in the same place as my resume and other content?

So researching today, I tripped across the concept of a social media resume.