How to write policies and procedures for real people – a 2-day in-house training programme

Course detail



  • managers
  • administrators
  • and business owners who want to write REAL policies and procedures
  • those lucky people tasked with reviewing and redeveloping policies in your workplace

How long?

How long?

2 days

(9am – 4:30pm)

How many?

How many?

Up to 12 participants

Course description

If you want to write policies to tick a box and sit on a shelf, find another course!  Our focus here is to write policies that both work for your business AND get used by the people who need them.

Gone are the days of policies and procedures that are costly to write and dusty to store.  The product of this course will be policies and procedures that are short, sharp, and easy to follow.

We’ll cover all the good foundational stuff of clear, modern business writing, then we’ll focus on the requirements of policy and procedural writing at a specialist level.

You’ll bring your own documents to work on and apply the skills straight away.  How often do you get to pick an expert’s brain?  Make the most of it. And what the hell – let’s have fun while we’re at it!

Course content

  • plain language approaches—how to make your writing clear, simple, and understandable by a wide audience
  • reader-centric tools—understanding your readers’ needs, and structuring a document accordingly
  • editing and reviewing techniques—so you can make sure policies (written by you and others) are sharp, polished, and impressive every time!
  • the difference between policy, procedure, and process
  • how good policies can save you all kinds of trouble
  • how to identify the need for a policy
  • to policy or not to policy—when enough is enough
  • policy development process
  • the structure of policies and procedures
  • the language of policies and procedures
  • legality, obligations, and pitfalls

Course outline day 1

  • what is plain language?
  • who uses it?
  • why use it? (the benefits)

  • active voice
  • 1st person
  • speakable Language
  • sentence length
  • positive
  • professional
  • personal

  • focus on the reader for success
  • putting yourself in the readers’ shoes
  • what all readers want to know
  • bottom line up front

  • understanding the pieces of the puzzle
  • what good policy and procedure writing is really about
  • the problem with unwritten rules
  • the problem with out of date policies
  • the problem with badly written policies or old fashioned policy language
  • how to respond proactively

Course outline day 2

  • “police” and “policy” come from the same word.  Are you creating a police state in your organisation?
  • identify need
  • get the right people involved (but not too many!)
  • dump, chunk, draft
  • the review process
  • policy approval and socialisation
  • the importance of standardisation
  • ideal structure
  • writing engaging policies and procedures
  • simplifying the complex
  • when to use a disclaimer
  • avoiding absolutes, weasel words, conditional phrases and other risky bits
  • using unambiguous, unbiased, and non-emotive language
  • 3 hat editing process
  • reviewing skills
  • surviving the review process
  • practice, practice, practice!

Other info

Before the course

Before the course

Provide samples of current policies and procedures (if any)

To bring on the day

To bring on the day

  • laptop/tablet (optional but useful)
  • your own policies and procedures to review
  • or a list of new ones to write—you’ll be writing one!

Post-training options

Post-training options

  • 1 – 1 coaching
  • document assessments

What are you waiting for?

Book now

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