Briefing Notes That Work

Briefing notes are an important resource when information must be disseminated quickly and accurately from information-gatherers and subject matter experts to decision-makers. How can briefing notes provide clear, concise, complete summaries to help target readers grasp the essential details of an issue and act on them? Through a combination of lessons, discussions, and hands-on exercises, participants will learn to create useful and effective documents to inform and advise their readers. Checklists for planning and editing briefing notes will be provided.

  • Topics
  • Audience
  • Instructor
  • Types of briefing notes
  • Elements of an effective briefing note
  • Planning the briefing note: knowing your audience, understanding the issue and purpose of the briefing note
  • Structure of a briefing note: issue, background, current status, strategic considerations, options/recommendations, conclusion and next steps
  • Briefing from different sources
  • Writing style: balancing conciseness and clarity
  • Revising the briefing note
  • Specific problems: eliminating unnecessary detail; being economical with words; remaining impartial; working with tight deadlines; etc.
  • Professional writers, communication officers, policy analysts, media monitors, or anyone who is called on to produce effective briefing notes at work

Nathan Lockhart, M.A., MCATD, has more than 20 years of professional experience as an advisor, manager and trainer. A former employee of Health Canada and the Privy Council Office, his knowledge spans a number of important disciplines including policy analysis and development, negotiation, issues management and adult training and development. Nathan is a dynamic public speaker with a strong understanding of the workplace challenges and demands facing today's professionals. In addition to publicly available workshops, he has provided training to more than 30 federal departments and agencies as well as organizations in the private and non-governmental sectors.

"Excellent workshop. It addressed all my thoughts with respect to writing effective briefing notes. The instructor was impeccable."

Select a session

June 1, 2, 2017
8:00 - 15:00
$490.00
July 17, 18, 2017
8:00 - 15:00
$490.00
September 14, 15, 2017
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
October 2, 3, 2017
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
November 20, 21, 2017
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
December 11, 12, 2017
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
January 25, 26, 2018
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
February 15, 16, 2018
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
March 27, 28, 2018
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
May 17, 18, 2018
9:00 - 16:00
$520.00
June 11, 12, 2018
8:00 - 15:00
$520.00
July 12, 13, 2018
8:00 - 15:00
$520.00

Certificate in Workplace Writing 

This workshop is part of our new Certificate in Workplace WritingLearn how to get started.

Group Training

Our courses, delivered exclusively to your employees, offer different levels of training customization to meet your organization’s specific requirements.

To discuss your training needs, please click here to submit a request for a group training.

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