Writing Effective Administrative Policies

Writing Effective Administrative Policies

What are Perfect Policies?

Poorly written policies send out unintended messages. Organizations commonly write administrative policies with unintended negative undertones, but most people are unaware of the hidden messages their policies send.

The writers of a policy are the most oblivious to those undertones. You cannot see the picture clearly when you’re inside the frame. Like a crack that goes unnoticed in the ceiling you stand under every day, these issues would never come to your attention unless you knew what to look for and were specifically on the hunt.

When it comes to administrative policies, We are miscommunications experts.

We help the people behind the administrative policies recognize problems and train them how to fix them. We demonstrate how their hidden negative messages impact the bottom line, and how they can be avoided.

If your employees—or customers—aren't following your rules, often non-compliance can be directly attributed to confusion around poorly drafted requirements. Too often simple rules are laced with non-essential information and ambiguous wording.

The problem is further compounded by unnecessarily aggressive language. In an attempt to increase the level of compliance, the tone can range from urging up to bullying.

None of these approaches is effective. Employees will tolerate being spoken to disrespectfully for only so long before they decide to leave. Customers won't tolerate it at all. And at the end of the day, both employee turnover and customer dissatisfaction have a direct impact on the bottom line.

Well-written policy documents are clear, concise, and respectful. Let us help.


Lewis S. Eisen

Lewis S. Eisen

Trainer • Speaker • Author • Consultant

Lewis S. Eisen, founder of Perfect Policies, has over 30 years’ experience working with information management technology.

He has been a practising lawyer, an IT systems manager, and has worked with Information Management in the Government of Canada for the past 12 years, including

  • Drafting the Government of Canada's Information Management policy instruments
  • Teaching Information Management at the Canada School of Public Service
  • Acting as Director of Corporate Integrated Records Service at a Government of Canada department, and
  • Working as a Senior Information Management Analyst at the Bank of Canada.
In addition, over those 30 years, Lewis has taught thousands of professionals across North America to be more productive using desktop technology. His workshops are extremely well-received and he is a frequent speaker at conferences across the country.

He is well-published, with several books and numerous articles to his name, including the leading text Respectful Policies and Directives: How to Write Rules that People Want to Follow.



Ambiguity When Using “Should”


Unintentionally Disrespectful


Policy Brief #5 — The Policy Regulatory Framework


Policy Brief #4 Comparing well-written to poorly-written rules

© 2016 Prefex Services Ltd. All rights reserved.