Writing Board Papers

Our Board Paper writing training helps your people write concise and strategic board papers. Often writers are not clear as to what is appropriate and inappropriate content required by the Board to help them make their decisions. The reports often include too much detail and operational content, which requires significant editing before submitting. It makes decision making harder for board members because relevant strategic information is lost in detail.

This board paper writing training program helps staff members write succinct, strategic and high-level reports. The workshop is tailored to focus on your specific documentation and develops the skills that help to write high level reports attracting minimal editing.

Tailored Board Paper Writing training program – virtual or in-house delivery – Melbourne – Sydney – Brisbane – Adelaide – Perth – Hobart – Darwin – Canberra – all regional areas – Asia – and anywhere else


  • Full-day face-to-face or
  • 2 x 3.5 hours live virtual training.


This program is suited for team members who write Board Papers. This Board Paper writing training will be tailor-designed for teams and groups of colleagues. We tailor the program to the level of the participants and the types of documents they write. Ask us how. Receive this Board Paper writing course at your office. We deliver our programs all over Australia, including Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.


Learn how to:

  • Understand the purpose of a Board Paper
  • Identify the objectives of a Board Paper
  • Understand what information the Board Members need to make their decisions
  • Define the structure and purpose of the headings in the Board Papers
  • Populate the Board Paper templates with appropriate information
  • Capture key information and write it succinctly with a logical flow
  • Effectively construct sentences and paragraphs to increase readability
  • Eliminate 20 – 30 per cent of wasted words in a report.

Board Paper Writing training delivered in-house at your premises or in an online virtual classroom

We deliver our board paper writing training programs either through:

All our facilitators are certified in COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control Training by the Australian Department of Health. Therefore, you can rest assured we will deliver safe face-to-face workshops in collaboration with you.

Board Paper Writing training for groups – using your documents

Where relevant, we will use your organisation’s internal formats, templates and style guide.

We will also use anonymised examples of participants’ writing in the workshop. With this material the facilitator:

  • Assesses their writing ability
  • Gains a thorough understanding of the written work they prepare
  • Extracts examples for use as training material within the program.

Ask us how we apply this to your organisation.

Approach to your Board Paper Writing training program

We’ll discuss your needs and create a board paper writing course that perfectly suits the audience and the reports they write. We’ll adjust this highly interactive workshop to the level of the participants. Participants will use their own documents to immediately apply their new report writing skills. Ask us how we can tailor a report writing training program to suit your needs:

  • call 1300 655 098
  • start a chat at the bottom of our page
  • send us a message.

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Free eCoaching: ask an ICML trainer – get advice on board paper writing

Do you have any questions about writing board papers you’d like to ask? Do it here. One of our trainers will answer on the page and we’ll let you know by email when we post the response. We aim to come back to you within a few business days. If you need more urgent advice, try our chat at the bottom of the page.

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  • Vinesh M
    Posted at 11:45h, 02 July Reply

    Hi, I have had my board papers rejected several times but I’m not sure why. I think I put in all the necessary hard work and detail. What can you recommend?

    • Brinda Bajaj ICML
      Posted at 15:57h, 06 July Reply

      Hi Vinesh

      That’s an interesting question and one that we come across all the time in our Board Paper writing training workshops. I haven’t seen your written work but I suspect your issue has to do with the level of detail. I’ll tell you about a real case study:

      Nailing appropriate content when writing Board Papers

      A year ago I was conducting a Writing Board Papers training course and all participants were required to send me copies of their reports beforehand to use within the program.

      I received an impeccably presented paper requesting Board sign off on $500,000 for an IT upgrade. It was visually perfect, grammatically correct and easy to read – but it was 16 pages long. I enquired whether it was approved, but the answer was no. The author said, “I don’t know why it wasn’t approved. I’ve been told to rework it but I don’t know why; all the information is there.”

      This is a common problem of including too much detail when writing Board Papers. We must get into the brain of the reader to determine what information they need in order to make their decisions at their level. That will govern the depth of content.

      An operational manager – requires all the detail on how the solution will work, options considered, functionality and costs. Their responsibility is to find the right solution.

      A Board Member – requires return on investment information or decisions which helps the business achieve their strategic plan. All their decisions are at a strategic level and based on how the business will benefit if they spend this money. Will they save labour hours, get data faster or get more data?

      The Board’s job is to keep the business functioning and viable. It will be a shorter report simply focusing on business benefits, costs, any risks and may be a high level implementation plan. When the operational manager signs off on the solution’s functionality, all the operational detail should be extracted from the report with the Board Paper focusing only on return on investment.

      It is never a simple case of ‘one report suits all’. Different levels of management bring different scrutinies to the proposal. Our job when writing Board Papers is to understand the scrutinies at different levels and present the right information to help the reader make their decisions.

      What happens if we put in too much detail when writing a Board Paper?
      I met with considerable author pushback in the Board Paper writing course when we took all the operational detail out. He said, “But surely the Board Members can find the information in the report? They are clever people and need to know the detail and the whole story.” The answer is ‘no’ – Board Members get agitated sifting through useless information because it:

        • wastes their time (and they have another 40 reports to read by the Board meeting tomorrow night)
        • hides the relevant decision-making points
        • can distract them into operational issues.

      Lesson for all writers
      Understand the reader and why they are reading it. Transition from your brain into theirs and give them the information they need to make their decisions. The mark of a good business writer is not necessarily what you put into a report, but what you leave out. Don’t do a brain dump on a topic – select, select, select for the reader.

      I hope that helps you with your own Board papers. Please let us know if you have any further questions.


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