Writing Effective Executive Summaries


A good executive summary must not only distil the key information in a long and often technical report, it must also engage the reader’s interest. It is often what “sells” the document or ideas contained in it to your reader, even when your report is not a commercial business plan. In addition to showcasing the document’s highlights, it must present information that is scrupulously accurate and unbiased. Our natural impulse in writing a summary is to take the specifics of the report and write general statements that encompass them. However, generalizing too much will weaken writing, so we must avoid the generalization trap. This one-day workshop combines theory with hands-on practice. It will show you how to write clear, specific, and compelling summaries that convey the spirit and essence of the message.



  • Understanding your purpose and your audience
  • Identifying key information quickly
  • Engaging the reader
  • Ensuring precision and accuracy
  • Making every word count
  • Making physical format work for you



  • Anyone who must write summaries of written reports



6 hours



  • $595 (plus tax)
  • Courses offered in 2023: $655 (plus tax)


Featured Instructor

Moira White is a versatile communicator with decades of experience in plain language editing, writing, and teaching.

Moira holds a master’s degree in social policy. She has managed onsite production of reports in Canada and Europe and has travelled across Canada with public consultations writing, editing, and producing reports. Her specialties include synthesizing the work of multiple authors, writing to tight deadlines, and writing executive summaries.

She is an honorary life member and past president of Editors Canada and is a member of PLAIN (Plain Language Association InterNational).

In her spare time, Moira indulges her fascination with fiber and colour by spinning, knitting, and weaving.

"Great workshop! Good exercises and class discussions. I will definitely recommend it to my colleagues as this course was relevant to my work.


Event CodeTitleBegin DateEnd DateTermDelivery MethodRegister to Event
P2022212AWriting Effective Executive Summaries12/1/202212/2/2022AutumnOnlineRegister to Event
P02022303AWriting Effective Executive Summaries3/1/20233/2/2023WinterOnlineRegister to Event