There are true stories that wealthy people tell about housekeepers that have stolen from them, lied to them, and so on. And there are stories that housekeepers tell about employers who have cheated them, blamed them unfairly, and so on. Both kinds of stories are true but each carries a different sensibility. This article has a few stories from the domestic help, as it were. Unlike urban myths that 'happened to a friend of a friend,' every one of these happened directly to me.
There are three levels of exchange in the grantor-grantee relationship. First is the one-to-one interaction between two individuals, and that's the level this article addresses. More importantly, at another level are grantmaking practices, such as restrictions on proposals or the processes for applications. And the third is the relationship between the funding market as a whole, and the fund-seeking market as a whole. This article looks at the least important of these: the one-to-one interactions. We don't mean to suggest that these are less important than the other two levels. In fact, if these were the worst of grantseeking, it wouldn't be the subject of sore complaints. In any case, stories like the ones here are of the sort that are constantly swapped over drinks after nonprofit events; this article takes one person's experience and shares them more broadly:
1. The head of corporate grantmaking at a bank phoned me to let me know she had received our application for funding and to tell me the timeline for their response. She went on to tell me about a local chamber music group where she is on the board, and asked me to . . .