So I was interested when someone in the company forwarded me some material on "Precision Questioning and Answering", which the consulting company of course abbreviated to PQ and PA.
Looking through the material (some of it free on their website), a lot of it seems common sense, but does address two issues why concise communication is needed:
- Executives are overloaded with information and don't want the thorny details, just the high-level information they need. They hired you, after all, to take care of the fine print.
- There simply isn't time to go into the details of every project. "Drilling down" would make meetings take hours and emails last pages. This points are driven home when you start moving out of operational and departmental meetings and start participating in executive and board meetings. The information traded is brief, concise and rapid. There is no "drill down", and you would be amazed on how (seemingly) little information is used to make decisions.
There is nothing earth shattering in the material, but it's nice for a refresher on how to better communicate to senior management.