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How to Write Executive Summaries – Training Course Outline
Most people will tell you that the purpose of an executive summary is to encapsulate your whole idea in just 250 words. And that's where they go wrong...
It’s actually all about creating that right first impression. The job of the executive or management summary is to sell, not to describe. You need to convey the essence and energy of your idea – and you have about 30 seconds to grab your readers’ interest.
The executive summary should be the best-written and most polished piece of the document. This is because many readers may only look at the executive summary when deciding whether or not to read the entire bid, business case or report.
Given how important your summary is, don't risk leaving it to chance. Training in writing executive or management summaries will show you how you can clearly demonstrate your ideas and strategy, in the section of your proposal you can be sure your audience will read.
What you will learn on this executive summary training course
By the end of the course, you will be able to:
- Understand the purpose and develop a strategy for your executive summary
- Engage your reader from the first paragraph
- Stand out from the competition
- Convince your reader before they even get to the main document
- Tie the executive summary to key messages in the rest of your document
How we deliver the How to Write Executive Summaries course
It is available as a one-day tutor-led Virtual Classroom.
Delegates practise writing executive summaries, learning the techniques through group discussion, exercises and working on real documents you bring on the day.
1. Starting off on the right foot
- Common mistakes
- Different types of executive summary
- When do you write an executive summary?
- What should it include and who should write it?
- Understanding the purpose of the document and the executive summary
- Identifying your key messages
- How to tell a compelling and persuasive story
When you book we send you a questionnaire which we ask you to return to us before you attend the course. This enables our Trainers to assess your needs in advance.
2. Thinking about your readers
- Understanding why identifying your readers is important to your writing style
- How to identify different types of reader
- What does your reader need from the executive summary?
- How to deal with a mixed readership
- What will persuade the reader to buy from you rather than your competitors?
3. Structuring the executive summary
- What structure should you use?
- Understanding the alternatives that are open to you
- Using techniques to sequence and organise material
- What to include and what to leave out
- Presenting adequate information to support your conclusion
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4. Making your writing persuasive
- Use the eight principles of good writing to sharpen your writing style
- What makes writing persuasive?
- Understanding the difference between persuasive and sales orientated writing
- Techniques to make your writing persuasive
5. Creating the right first impression
- Why you need to capture readers’ interest in the first paragraph
- How to capture their interest
- How to write stunning opening paragraphs using a simple technique
6. What about graphics?
- How to decide if graphics have ‘earned their place’
- Golden rules for using graphics
7. Giving it that final polish
- A checklist to use when checking your draft
- The importance of good punctuation and grammar
- Some common punctuation errors and how to avoid them
- Why proof reading is critical. Top tips on how to do it and what to look out for
8. Case study
- Practice all the principles using our case study, or work on an executive summary of your own