Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Chapeau Extraordinaire

During my year in the Pentagon, we were often asked to put together a chapeau--that would be French for hat.  This meant we needed to distill a policy paper to a one page slide (powerpoint, of course), summarizing the piece and its highlights.  Tom Ricks does an excellent job summarizing a longer policy paper (which I will read soon) on the need to reform the management of intelligence collection processing in Afghanistan (and this can easily apply elsewhere).

A couple of important things to note:
  • the CNAS policy paper was written by an active two star general who wanted to get the message out beyond his own command.  And slipping it to Ricks makes sure it gets even wider dissemination since his blog is almost certainly required reading for much of the military elite.
  • "'But, except in rare cases, ineffective intel officers are allowed to stick around.'" due to the challenge of overseeing secret stuff.  Ug.  Not surprised but ug nonetheless.
  • Powerpoint and spreadsheets with nifty colors are not the way to go--must do serious reading.  Drat!
Do read the Ricks post both for form and content.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Women destroying water wells to hang out with their friends? Be that as it may, these kinds of participatory issues have been around for a long time. How about asking the people who will use the wells where they would like them to be situated? Has nothing to do with "intel".