How to Create an Executive Summary

When it comes to necessary business documents, you may find yourself using all kinds of documents to help you in your work. While you may have a need for templates for letters or other documents, you may also see a need for executive memo templates and similar tools to help you with the writing process. One such document that you might need that kind of help with might be an executive summary.

Put succinctly, an executive summary is a short summary of report or proposal in which you condense the most important ideas into something short and understandable to laymen. While you might be able to find free executive summary templates to help you write them, it is important that you have some kind of understanding of how to make the documents yourself. After all, going to such lengths can go some way to making your documents all the more effective.

Steps to writing an executive summary

The most basic information you would need here is knowing exactly what steps you need to take in order to write your executive summaries. Even if you had the best executive summary samples that you can get inspiration from, it still pays to have some knowledge of the necessary steps you need so that you can be more certain that you are making your summaries properly.

Start by introducing your company

You should begin your executive summary by introducing your reader to your company. This allows you to introduce yourself, so to speak, and give your reader a good reason to hear the rest of your summary. As with other kinds of documents, your first section needs to hook your reader by gaining their interest from the very start. As such, your introduction should include some of your specific achievements to give readers plenty of reason to continue.

Identify your problem

As with other documents, you need to state that there is some kind of issue present in the market, such as a lack of supply for some kind of demand by the public. Including the problem in your executive summary templates can indicate that you do have an awareness of the problems your field faces, and implies early on that you have a solution to deal with the issue. Stating the problem can also make it much easier for readers to understand it themselves, particularly if they are laymen who may not understand it as well as you.

Provide a solution

Naturally, once you have stated the existence of a problem, you also need to provide a solution. This is a good way of demonstrating how you can provide a concrete answer to the problem you previously identified, which can get your readers to view you as a viable option for dealing with the issue. This is a vital step since you do want your readers to consider your solutions as workable ones; hence, there is a need for you to include them so that readers have some kind of answer to their current problems.

Explain why there is a need to act now

Part of making your case more convincing requires that you give your summary a sense of urgency. You need to impart your readers with the idea that action needs to be taken now, and that you are in the best position to provide prompt action. The worst that can happen is that your competitors may end up being selected rather than yourself, so you do need to act quickly with your executive summaries.

Include projections and data to support your claims

When making any kind of paper or report, your case can always be strengthened by including actual data that can support your claims. This can serve to reassure your clients by providing objective proof that the problems are an issue and that your solutions are viable. You may encounter executive summary examples that do this and are all the more effective for it since they never make unsubstantiated claims.

Tips for writing an executive summary

Other than the steps needed to make your executive summaries, you may also find some tips that might make your work all the more convenient. There are always some other steps you can take in order to ensure that you make the most of any executive summary templates you do end up using.

Avoid exaggeration

Whenever you make any claims in your executive summaries, you would want to make sure that the claims are well-grounded. Making grandiose claims could bring trouble later down the road, particularly when your investors and partners find that you cannot live up to your claims. You can use sample executive summary templates to help determine how grand you should make your claims so that you can keep them realistic.

Keep your summary concise

As the name implies, you are making summaries so it would be important to make sure that you do not add excessive details. If you should make your summary too long, then your readers will likely stop reading since they may as well read the actual report in full. Your executive summary serves to give readers all the information needed to understand your project without any other background or context, so it is vital that you remember to be succinct to avoid information overload.

Avoid buzzwords and jargon

Potential business partners are likely to have heard and read other documents full of buzzwords and jargon so including them in your summary is more likely to drive them away. Buzzwords can dilute the meaning of what you are trying to say, which can confuse those who are trying to get information from your summary. In the case of laymen, they are likely to be confused by jargon and be unable to keep up. One thing to keep in mind in order to remedy this is to write as if the audience has no idea of the problem, which may be the case at some point.

Be sure to use a formal and professional tone

As with other examples of official documents, it is vital that you write your executive summary in a formal tone. You are likely to be dealing with others familiar with the business world, so there is a need for you to stay as professional as possible when writing. You can take the example of executive report templates which would need to use a similar tone, so this may be useful for you to know.

These insights should give you a complete idea of how to use executive summary templates if that should ever become a necessity, to say nothing of how you should be in a better position to write your own summaries properly.