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The Talking Paper

Purpose.   The talking paper is a format designed to present key points simply. The most common use for this format is when something has to be explained to the Commander or some other decision maker. They don't want to waste their time reading a detailed report. They just want the facts and the bottom line. Section chiefs are often asked to present papers like these when a decision has to be made on an issue.

Format.   There is no standard format. See the example at left from the Tongue and Quill. It serves as a good starting point. You'll have to adjust as your supervisor inevitably kicks it back with further guidance. In my opinion, these examples are too detailed. Decision makers usually want very brief Talking Papers that more closely resemble PowerPoint slides than these Tongue and Quill examples.

Audience   Like any briefing, the paper should be tailored for your audience. If the audience is your commander, he is probably interested in how much it will cost or what services his squadron will be obligated to provide and not so much in the references or small print.

Talking Paper Example

Air Force Talking Paper

Air Force Talking Paper

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