Minister’s Briefing Guidelines

… a resource page for Toronto PPG1007

Deadlines and format

[Note for Section I: A separate column for Section I has been added to the dates/length/format guidelines and an asterisk added to “Issue” under key elements to reflect experience with the clients and discussions in class.]

Section I
Sections II, III, and IV
Due dates
  • Dry-run presentation decks due by email to instructor by 11:59 pm Tuesday, 20 March
  • Dry-run oral presentations: Wednesday, 21 March, in class
  • Revised presentation decks (and webpage material if desired) due by email to instructor by 11:59 pm Tuesday, 27 March
  • Final oral presentations: Wednesday, 28 March, in class
  • Final presentation deck (and webpage material if desired) due by email to instructor by 11:59 pm Tuesday, 3 April
Due dates
  • Presentations posted to Blackboard: Sunday, 18 March or Sunday 25 March at noon
  • Group Presentations: Wednesday, 21 March and 28 March, in class
  • Final Presentation Deck and Speaking Notes: Monday, 2 April at 5 pm
  • 10 minutes for oral presentation
  • 20 minutes for Q & A
  • No limit on number of slides in presentation deck
  • Students should assume the clients have read the presentation deck and have a printed copy in front of them
  • The oral presentation need not use projected slides but students should be prepared to refer to specific slides in answering questions
  • 15 minutes for presentation, 10-12 slides
  • 25 minutes for Q & A
  • PowerPoint
  • Readable and consistent text on slides
  • Images where useful
  • Beware of distracting graphics and effects (see Making Slide Presentations)

Key elements of presentation

  • Succinct statement of your implementation problem – why you are here to brief the Minister*, what decision is required, why now?

[* There are four real clients for the live cases used in Section I, one of whom is the Minister of Indigenous Services. Most of the implementation decisions for Section I’s cases can formally be made at the level of senior officials (i.e., by the Regional Director General, or the Deputy Minister, or the Secretary of the Treasury Board). These officials would want to be assured that the Minister is comfortable with the approach to be taken.]

Decision Context
  • Provide a summary of key background factors relevant to the problem and to the decision you are seeking
  • Include policy decisions or major commitments already made
  • Identify the intended goals and objectives of the initiative and the planned outcomes
 Implementation Challenges
  • Context
    • Fiscal, political and other drivers of decision-making
    • Policy priorities
    • Alignment of implementation environment
    • Timing considerations
  • Enabling conditions
    • Capacity of delivery system
    • Governance and accountability considerations
    • Outcomes
    • Risk and risk mitigation
Recommended Implementation Strategy
  • What option are you recommending – what course of action will best deliver the policy objective and intended outcomes?
  • Must be realistic, appropriate, achievable, affordable
  • Must meet the intended goals and objectives of the policy initiative and address the challenges as you have identified and assessed them
Rationale for Recommended Approach
  • Your analysis of your preferred option, related to the key challenges you have identified in the given context
  • Analysis should demonstrate that you have rigorously assessed:
    • Strengths or weaknesses of the delivery system
    • Governance and accountability considerations
    • Outcomes to be achieved
    • Risks and risk mitigation measures
  • Assess other relevant considerations
    • Cost/affordability
    • Sustainability
    • Alignment with major policy priorities
    • Impact
    • Expected stakeholder and public reactions
    • Communications issues
  • If your recommendation is to conduct a detailed consultation or establish an external body or process to develop more detailed recommendations, your proposal must identify the range of delivery options and the detailed issues for consideration during the consultation
Other Options Considered
  • Identify alternative ways (at least 2) that government could achieve its goals while dealing with the challenges and risks identified
  • Analysis (pros and cons, or integrated considerations) should identify why these options were considered but rejected (why are they weaker than what you are recommending)
Next Steps
  • Proposed implementation timetable or sequence – your “critical path” with phases, steps, timing, communications
  • Next steps – what needs to happen next for this recommendation to move forward

Discussion following the presentation

  • Prepare “hip-pocket” responses to some of the most obvious questions about the limits or gaps in your strategy
  • Be open about “known unknowns”
  • Acknowledge concerns about stakeholders/public reaction
  • Be ready to defend your recommended strategy – or to consider adjusting it in light of concerns tabled in the Briefing

Page created by: Ian Clark, created 9 October 2017, last modified 25 March 2018.