Example sentences brief update
Ministers are given a brief update on the campaign, significant polling figures and their orders, including which warnings to make and when, according to a senior figure who attends.
Despite its name, a constant feed would occasionally veer away to other games for brief updates, but coverage generally remained with the initial game.
There are brief updates of news, local news, sports, weather and traffic every twenty minutes, with longer news updates every hour.
Definition of 'brief' brief
Definition of 'update' update
Cobuild collocations brief update, browse alphabetically brief update.
- brief update
- brief visit
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Definition of brief
(Entry 1 of 3)
Definition of brief (Entry 2 of 3)
Definition of brief (Entry 3 of 3)
Examples of brief in a Sentence
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'brief.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
Middle English bref, breve , from Anglo-French bref, brief , from Latin brevis ; akin to Old High German murg short, Greek brachys
Middle English bref , from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin brevis , from Late Latin, summary, from Latin brevis brief entry 1
verbal derivative of brief entry 2
14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1
14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a
1836, in the meaning defined at sense 1
Phrases Containing brief
- a brief word
- watching brief
- keeping a watching brief
- hold a brief for
Articles Related to brief
A Brief on 'Brief' and 'Debrief'
The 'de-' in 'debrief' means "do the opposite of."
Dictionary Entries Near brief
Cite this entry.
“Brief.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary , Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/brief. Accessed 8 Nov. 2023.
Kids definition of brief.
Kids Definition of brief (Entry 2 of 3)
Kids Definition of brief (Entry 3 of 3)
Middle English bref, breve "short, brief," from early French brief, bref (same meaning), from Latin brevis "short" — related to breve
Middle English bref "formal letter," from early French bref (same meaning), derived from Latin brevis "summary," from earlier brevis (adjective) "short, brief"
Legal definition of brief.
(Entry 1 of 2)
called also memorandum
Note: Briefs are filed either by a party or an amicus curiae with a court usually regarding a specific motion (as for summary judgment) or point of law.
Legal Definition of brief (Entry 2 of 2)
Old French bref , brief letter, writ indicating legal proceedings, from Late Latin brevis , breve short document, summary, from Latin brevis , adjective, short
More from Merriam-Webster on brief
Nglish: Translation of brief for Spanish Speakers
Britannica English: Translation of brief for Arabic Speakers
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about brief
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Department Press Briefing – March 25, 2022
Jalina Porter, Principal Deputy Spokesperson
March 25, 2022
- SAUDI ARABIA
MS PORTER: Hello and happy Friday, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us for today’s teleconference. I have one update at the top, and then I will start with taking your questions.
Just over four weeks ago, Putin directed his forces to begin a premeditated, unprovoked, and unjustified war against Ukraine, the largest assault on a European state since World War II. In 30 days, more than 3.7 million refugees have been forced to flee Ukraine, making this the fastest-growing refugee crisis since World War II. According to the UN Human Rights Office, 1,035 civilians in Ukraine are reported as killed, and 1,650 have been injured. These numbers are actually likely much higher.
As the Secretary announced this week, based on information currently available, the United States Government assesses that members of Russia’s forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine. Reports estimate that nearly 10,000 Russian soldiers have been killed in action and more than 16,000 wounded since the invasion began, although the Russian Federation is only officially reporting a fraction of the human cost for its own forces and their families.
Over 15,000 people in Russia have been detained for peacefully protesting Putin’s war of choice. Journalists who are covering Putin’s war of choice have also felt the consequences of brutal tactics employed by Putin’s forces, with at least five journalists killed. Ukraine’s economy has ground to a halt as its people are literally fighting for their lives and forced from their homes.
Sanctions from scores of countries have set Russia’s economy back dramatically. Forecasters are now assessing a 20 percent rise in prices for the people of Russia for this year. The central bank has more than doubled its key interest rate, the highest in 20 years, and Russian authorities have forced experts  to sell at least 80 percent of their foreign currency they receive to prop up their weakening ruble.
Together with partners and allies, we will step up our efforts to enhance the measures in place and are developing additional ones to increase the cost to Russia. The United States has committed to provide over $2 billion in military equipment to Ukraine since the beginning of the Biden administration, including anti-air systems, anti-armor systems, and ammunition. The United States has also prepared to commit more than $1 billion towards humanitarian assistance for those affected by Russia’s war in Ukraine and its severe global impact.
Our support continues. The United States plans to welcome up to 100,000 Ukrainian citizens, as well as others who are fleeing Russia’s aggression. To meet this commitment, we are considering the full range of legal pathways to the United States, including the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program, parole, and visas, with the focus on welcoming Ukrainian citizens who have family members in the United States.
Putin’s invasion of Ukraine knows no borders and it impacts the entire global food supply chain. By starting a war between the two world’s most significant producers of agricultural commodities and inputs, Putin is driving up prices for food and fertilizer for everyone in the world, including those most vulnerable. The fastest and best way to stave off a global food crisis is for Putin to end this senseless war. Let farmers safely plant, harvest, and tend their fields, let ships carrying essential food commodities and related goods sail freely, and let businesses and warehouses operate as they did before the invasion.
There is no looming glory on the horizon for Putin and the Russian Federation. The choice for the Kremlin is an immediate ceasefire and the withdrawal of Russian forces to end needless suffering and to allow the people of Ukraine to return home and to live in peace.
Let’s start with Janne Pak, please.
OPERATOR: Pardon me. Can you repeat the name?
MS PORTER: Let’s have Janne Pak, USA Journal Korea.
OPERATOR: Your line is open.
QUESTION: Hi, Jalina. Can you hear me?
MS PORTER: Hi. I can hear you. How are you?
QUESTION: Yes, nice to – yeah, nice to hear from you. Happy Friday. I have a few questions.
First question about North Korea’s new ICBM launch yesterday. What is the U.S. position on North Korea’s abolition of the moratorium on this to the international community in 2018?
And my second question is: It will be difficult to pass unless China and Russia cooperate with additional sanctions against North Korea at the UN Security Council meeting, in particular as the war criminal Russia is not eligible for membership in the UN Security Council. Do you think these two countries – I mean China and Russia – should be expelled from the Permanent Members of the United Nations Security Council?
Is it – last question. The North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said that he would prepare for the long-term confrontation rather than negotiations between the U.S. and North Korea. How would you comment on that? Thank you very much.
MS PORTER: Thank you, Janne. I will take your first question first and say that the United States strongly condemns the DPRK for its test of long-range ballistic missiles. The President and his national security team are assessing the situation, and they are also in close coordination with our allies and partners. This launch is also a brazen violation of multiple UN Security Council resolutions and it needlessly raises tensions and risks destabilizing the security situation in the reason – in the region. This action also demonstrates that the DPRK continues to prioritize its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs over the well-being and human rights of its own people. We urge all countries to hold the DPRK accountable for such violations, and we also call on the DPRK to come to the table for serious negotiations.
On your second question, regarding Russia and the PRC on the Security Council, I’m not in a position to speak to that. But what I will say is that we are in the early stages of consulting on this issue. There have been developments that should be of concern to all countries, particularly those who share a border with the DPRK. The DPRK’s decision to return to ICBM tests is a clear escalation, and China and Russia should send a strong message to its DPRK partners to refrain from additional provocations and also engage in sustained diplomacy.
To your last question noting confrontations rather than negotiations, I would say that the door to diplomacy is not closed, and that the United States will take all necessary measures to ensure the security of the American homeland and the Republic of Korea and our Japanese allies.
Let’s please go to Alex Raufoglu.
OPERATOR: Your line is now open.
QUESTION: Hey, Jalina. Thank you so much. Can you hear me?
MS PORTER: Yes, I can hear you.
QUESTION: Yes, yes. Happy Friday. Thank you so much for this opportunity. My question is about Azerbaijan and Armenia. Yesterday the State Department urged both sides to use direct communication channels to immediately de-escalate, something that – there’s a plausible on the Azerbaijani side, and there’s a lack of information about what exactly is going on. I was wondering if this – there was another tweet from the State Department, actually, that there was a phone call between the Assistant Secretary Donfried and the foreign ministers. If you have anything further on that call, any readout.
And also, what is the state of U.S. mediation efforts at this point? Is the Minsk Group still around? And given what Russia has been doing in the region, do you still consider Russia a partner on peacemaking in the region? Thank you so much again.
MS PORTER: Thanks, Alex. I’ll start off by saying that we are closely monitoring the situation along the line of contact established between – established following the November 2020 ceasefire. The United States is deeply concerned about Azerbaijan troop movements. Troop movements and other escalatory measures are irresponsible and unnecessarily provocative.
And to your question on the phone call between our Assistant Secretary Karen Donfried, I can confirm that our assistant secretary did speak with both the Armenian and – Armenian foreign minister and the Azerbaijani foreign minister on March 24th, and she just reiterated what Secretary Blinken told the Prime Minister Pashinyan as well as President Aliyev on March 21st and 22nd, which was calling both sides to show restraint and intensify diplomatic engagement to find comprehensive solutions to all of the outstanding issues. Armenia and Azerbaijan just need to use direct communication channels to immediately de-escalate.
On your second question, the United States, as a co-chair of the OSCE Minsk Group, remains deeply committed to working with the sides to achieve a long-term political settlement of the conflict.
Let’s go to Nadia Bilbassy, please.
QUESTION: Jalina, Happy Friday. Thank you for taking my call. Two questions. The first is on the attack on Saudi Arabia by the Houthis and the reaction to that, and basically Saudi commander said this is a message from Iran and they are actually targeting oil installation.
And second, on this summit between – that the Secretary of State is going to attend in Israel with the Bahrainis and Emiratis and the Moroccans are attending, can you give us some highlights about this summit, why it came about, and especially that the Secretary was going to meet MBZ in Morocco? Thank you so much.
MS PORTER: Hi, Nadia. To your second question, I believe you’re referring to the Abraham – or Abraham Accords ministerial, which we can confirm that the Secretary is participating in. And as we said previously, the Abraham Accords are a positive development that has had clear benefits for Israel as well as the region. The United States will continue to look for opportunities to engage Israel as well as other countries to normalize relations and expand cooperation.
And to your second question as far as a reaction of the most recent Houthi attack, we certainly condemn the latest Houthi attack, and the attacks are unacceptable and have also affected Saudi infrastructure as well as schools, mosques, and workplaces, and they’ve endangered the civilian population, including tens of thousands of U.S. citizens living in Saudi Arabia. We will continue to work with our Saudi partners to strengthen their defenses while also working to advance a durable resolution that ends the conflict in Yemen, improves Yemeni lives, and creates a space for Yemenis to collectively determine their own future.
Let’s go to Michele Kelemen, please.
QUESTION: Hi, can you hear me?
MS PORTER: Yes, I can hear you. How are you?
QUESTION: Good. So I want to know about the meetings that were called off in Doha with the Taliban. What were these meetings about? And the statement I saw said that U.S. diplomats made clear to them that this could be a potential turning point in engagement with the Taliban, and I just wonder what that means.
And one quick note on – the sound quality is not great on this. I don’t know if you’re speaking on a speakerphone or on headset, so I just want to point that out. Thanks.
MS PORTER: Michele, if we still have you, can you repeat your last question? Thank you.
QUESTION: Oh, the last was just a comment about the sound quality on – when you speak is not great today. There’s a lot of crackling sounds and I don’t know if that’s because you’re on a speaker or a headset, but I just wanted to make that point. But the question was about the meetings with the Taliban.
MS PORTER: Well, I’ll start by apologizing for any of the crackling and background noise or any feedback you or anyone else may be experiencing. We certainly appreciate your patience and appreciate you joining in. We’ll certainly take that feedback to the tech team here at State.
To your first question on canceled meetings in Doha, that’s correct. We have canceled some of our engagements, including planned meetings in Doha and around the Doha Forum, and have made clear that we see this decision as a potential turning point in our engagement. The decision by the Taliban, if it is not swiftly reversed, will profoundly harm the Afghan people, the country’s prospects for economic growth, and the Taliban’s ambition to improve their relations with the international community.
For the sake of Afghanistan’s future and the Taliban’s relations with the international community, we urge the Taliban to live up to their commitments and to their people. We also stand with Afghan girls and their families who see education as a path to realizing their full potential of Afghanistan society and economy. And I hope that was audible on your end. Again, apologize for any confusion.
Let’s take a final question from Endale Getahun.
QUESTION: Hello, good – good afternoon. Can you hear me?
MS PORTER: Hi. Yes, I can hear you.
QUESTION: Thank you. Thank you, Jalina. Thanks for taking my call. We just – can we – this will be regarding in East Africa, for Ethiopia. I just – I don’t know if you’ve seen the statement that was put out with chairman from the Foreign Relations Committee with Senator Menendez regarding the – this will be a follow-up question, actually, from my last few questions there.
And he was referring that black migrants are too often excluded on decisions, especially on TPC for Afghan, and apparently was interested on your open statement for Ukraine for the temporary protection status, but Cameroon and Ethiopia should – will be able to fit into this, but the Biden administration and what-have-you seem to – referring that the black migrant was not being excluded to this.
My question is that: Why it’s not – Ethiopia and Cameroon was not into those designation and a deal? Also, the secretary of – Mayorkas has also designated on March 3rd for Ukraine for TPC for those two – for two countries, which is Afghanistan and Cameroon – I’m sorry, Ukraine, but more for Ethiopia was not into that.
My second question is: Also the Tigray government has just came – brought statements regarding – the statement came from the central government of Ethiopia. What is your comments on – or if you have seen it? With that still the banking systems and telecommunications and transportation, others, has not still lifted in Tigray, but that’s still there. So what’s your statement on the current situation in Tigray as well?
And the last question I have: Secretary Blinken has said it, last statement on his, that in Russia there will be numerous collections of evidence on crime or any crime committed by Russia. That was hopefully with – I think the statement was taken 20 days after the Ukraine invasion, but there is almost 500 days on – in Tigray and launched war by Ethiopian Government and Eritreans. Is any evidence that they will consider to show it as a war crime? And why it so – takes so long to name it as genocide, like Congress was asking for the Secretary Blinken when he only made a statement ethnic cleansings only like 10 months ago? Thank you.
MS PORTER: Thank you, Endale. That was a lot, and I will try to get through as much as possible.
QUESTION: Thank you.
MS PORTER: But what I’ll do is start off by saying that the United States is committed to the unity, the sovereignty, and the territorial integrity of Ethiopia, and seeks peace and stability in Ethiopia to build on the longstanding strong partnership between our governments and our people.
I’ll also say that we welcome the Ethiopian Government’s March 24th declaration of an indefinite humanitarian truce, effective immediately, and welcome the Tigray regional authority’s statement in response expressing its commitment to the cessation of hostilities and all necessary measures to assure unhindered access for humanitarian assistance. We urge all parties to work in collaboration with humanitarian organizations to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance to all those in need, and we also strongly support these declarations and expect them to be quickly followed by the movement of lifesaving assistance.
To another point that you mentioned in some of your questioning, I’ll say that the Secretary of the Homeland Security has the full authority to designate a foreign state for TPS after consultation with the appropriate government agencies, and that would include the Department of State. We certainly don’t comment on internal U.S. Government deliberations.
And on your question about atrocities, I’ll just say that we have always had strong concerns about atrocities, and we continue to review the situation. But as far as the determination status, we don’t have anything to announce at this time.
Thank you all for joining today’s press briefing. I hope you have a wonderful weekend ahead.
(The briefing was concluded at 2:33 p.m.)
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U.S. Department of State
The lessons of 1989: freedom and our future.
Morning Briefing: Asia Pacific Edition
Your friday briefing: russia doubles down.
Moscow wants victories before its Monday holiday.
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By Amelia Nierenberg
Good morning. We’re covering Russia’s increased bombing campaigns, the W.H.O.’s revised Covid death toll and sandstorms sweeping Iraq.
Russia’s brutal push in Mariupol
Russian forces sought to destroy the last pocket of resistance at the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol, Ukraine, where about 200 civilians were holed up with fighters, Ukrainian officials estimated.
A Ukrainian commander said that “heavy, bloody battles” were being fought in the plant’s subterranean labyrinth of bunkers and fallout shelters. Russian forces found their way into the complex when a former worker showed them tunnels they could use to enter, a city official said. Russia also bombarded key points along the eastern front, launching missiles at the strategic city of Kramatorsk.
The onslaught comes days before the May 9 holiday, which commemorates the Soviet Union’s triumph over Nazi Germany. Seizing Mariupol, a potent symbol for President Vladimir Putin, would allow him to claim a major victory before Moscow’s military celebration.
Ukraine is still holding strong despite suffering heavy injuries . Ukrainian forces reclaimed several villages around the eastern city of Kharkiv and pushed the Russians back some two dozen miles from the city, officials said, putting civilian areas that have suffered weeks of bombardment out of reach of Russian artillery. Here are live updates .
Mariupol: The Russian bombing of a theater in the coastal city in March killed about 600 people , The Associated Press found, which is almost double the death toll cited so far.
Energy: Despite pleas from Western governments, India continues to buy Russia’s oil at a low price. Europe is struggling to replace Russian gas amid climate concerns and political disputes.
Strategy: U.S. intelligence helped Ukraine kill Russian generals , according to American officials. Ukrainian officials said they had killed approximately 12 generals on the front lines, a number that has astonished military analysts.
Russians who oppose Putin’s government are being pushed from the country by the Kremlin.
Nicaragua’s ruling family — sanctioned by the U.S. — has used the war to try to normalize relations with Washington.
A new pandemic death count
The W.H.O. found that nearly 15 million more people died during the first two years of the pandemic than would have been expected during normal times.
Most were victims of Covid-19 itself, a global panel of experts said, but some died because the pandemic made it more difficult to get medical care for ailments such as heart attacks.
The previous count of virus deaths, from countries’ reporting, was six million. The new report offers a startling glimpse of how drastically the death counts reported by many governments have understated the true toll of the pandemic.
Details: In 2021, the total number of deaths was 18 percent more than usual — an extra 10 million people — as new and more contagious variants drove surges in countries that had fended off earlier outbreaks.
Background : The data had been ready since January, but India stalled their release after disputing the methodology. The W.H.O. estimates that nearly a third of the excess deaths globally — 4.7 million — took place there. India’s government counts just 481,080 excess deaths through the end of 2021.
Here are the latest updates and maps of the pandemic.
Millions of people are out of work in China. Migrant workers and recent college graduates have been hit hardest by the country’s lockdowns.
Some European companies, scared by Beijing’s Covid policies, are wary of investing further in China.
A new subvariant is spreading rapidly in the U.S.
A W.H.O. official said that Covid was a leading cause of maternal deaths in Latin America.
Another sandstorm pummels Iraq
The seventh sandstorm in recent months swept Iraq on Thursday. More than 5,000 people were treated for respiratory problems, according to the country’s health ministry, and at least one person died.
This year, the barrage of sandstorms has also grounded flights and limited driving visibility. (Watch a video from Baghdad here .)
Prof. Jaafar Jotheri, a geoarchaeologist in Iraq, expects 20 sandstorms to hit Iraq this year, up from two about 20 years ago. Climate change is partly to blame.
He also said that mismanagement of surface water and groundwater in the region — along with disturbances in deserts from farming and the movement of people — had exacerbated the issue.
What’s next: Climate change will most likely compound the challenges Iraq is facing, like water shortages after low rainfalls and increasing temperature.
Cost: In 2016, the U.N. said that more than $13 billion in gross domestic product was being lost each year because of dust storms in the Middle East and North Africa.
THE LATEST NEWS
Two assailants armed with a gun and an ax killed at least three people in Israel on Thursday night. Here are live updates .
The U.K.’s local elections will pose a test for Boris Johnson , Britain’s scandal-prone prime minister. If the Conservative Party loses, his leadership could be on the line.
Abortion rights activists in Ireland oppose a deal to turn a state-funded maternity hospital over to a charity set up by an order of Catholic nuns.
Chile called on FIFA to throw Ecuador out of the World Cup over a player’s eligibility. If FIFA complies, Chile would take its spot.
What Else Is Happening
The U.S. fight may soon shift to abortion pills , which are harder to trace and can terminate a pregnancy at home.
Climate change is making it harder for officials to use planned fires to thin forests before disasters strike.
Elon Musk has brought in new investors to contribute $7 billion toward his Twitter deal . The Times looked at how his childhood in apartheid South Africa may have shaped his worldview .
A Morning Read
Mexican authorities thought they had found a contemporary crime scene when they discovered dozens of skulls in 2012. Now, archaeologists think they were the victims of sacrificial killings more than 1,000 years ago instead of casualties from gang warfare.
ARTS AND IDEAS
Peatlands are some of the earth’s most effective reservoirs of carbon .
But for decades, humans have been drying out the long-neglected landscapes and letting them burn, propelling nearly two billion tons of carbon into the atmosphere annually. Five percent of our greenhouse-gas emissions each year come from peatland that we’ve converted from carbon sinks to sources .
Peatlands, though, can be restored. And one fast-fashion billionaire in Scotland sees an opportunity : Repairing the country’s damaged landscape may be a multimillion-dollar business, given generous subsidies.
The experiment suggests that profit motives can be harnessed to keep carbon in the ground. But it could also point to the transformation of the peatlands into a luxury good for wealthy investors seeking virtuous-seeming assets, making land much more expensive for people already living in Scotland.
PLAY, WATCH, EAT
What to cook.
The texture of these crunchy veggie burgers recalls okonomiyaki.
What to Watch
In the powerful French drama “ Happening ,” a student struggles to obtain an illegal abortion.
What to Read
In his new collection of essays and articles , the renowned physicist Carlo Rovelli takes on politics, justice and how we live now.
Now Time to Play
Play today’s Mini Crossword , and a clue: Overdone (five letters).
Here are today’s Wordle and Spelling Bee .
You can find all our puzzles here .
That’s it for today’s briefing. See you next time. — Amelia
P.S. Jeffrey Gettleman, who was most recently our South Asia bureau chief, is moving to London to serve as a roving global correspondent .
The latest episode of “ The Daily ” is on a post-Roe America.
You can reach Amelia and the team at [email protected] .
Amelia Nierenberg writes various newsletters for The Times. More about Amelia Nierenberg
Our Coverage of the War in Ukraine
The Future of Ukraine : The European Union and NATO have promised a path to membership for the country . But real partnership will hold risks and benefits .
Photos : Photographers with The New York Times and other news organizations have been chronicling the war , capturing a slice of how soldiers and civilians have experienced it. Our photographers say some images will never leave them .
Defying Isolation: After the invasion of Ukraine, the West tried to cut Russia off from the rest of the world. But wealthy Russians continue to rely on a network of middlemen to circumvent the restrictions .
A Wartime Partnership: The alliance between President Biden and President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine has become critical to the world order .
Zelensky’s Rise: The Ukrainian president, once brushed off as a political lightweight, has become a household name , representing his country’s tenacity.
How We Verify Our Reporting
Our team of visual journalists analyzes satellite images, photographs , videos and radio transmissions to independently confirm troop movements and other details.
We monitor and authenticate reports on social media, corroborating these with eyewitness accounts and interviews. Read more about our reporting efforts .
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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Is Taking Action to Strengthen Primary Care
Why we need to strengthen primary care, reprinted by permission of the national academy of medicine..
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recognizes that effective primary care is essential for improving the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities and advancing health equity. It is well documented that health systems with a robust primary care base provide better access to health services and have improved health outcomes, lower mortality, and more equity. Strong primary care can also result in significant cost savings.
By strengthening primary care, HHS will advance the Department’s strategic goals of expanding access, reducing disparities, improving health outcomes, and ensuring HHS programs reach underserved communities (HHS, n.d.a). Robust primary care is essential for addressing behavioral health, including the overdose epidemic and the child and adolescent mental health crisis; improving maternal and child health, such as by reducing disparities in maternal mortality; and preventing and managing chronic conditions.
Primary care in our nation is facing numerous challenges. Too many people lack access to primary care and an ongoing, trusted relationship with a primary care clinician and team. There are disparities in access based on race, ethnicity, age, geography, as well as other demographic factors (Jabbarpour et al., 2022). Key federal programs providing primary care to more than 30 million people in rural and underserved areas require additional investment and support to meet the needs in their communities. In addition, the workforce is not growing as fast as demand and the new generation of clinicians seek other disciplines with better work-life balance and compensation (HRSA, 2022; Steinwald et al., 2019). Federal investment in primary care research is low (Mendel et al., 2021). Last, coordination of primary care with other clinical services and sectors is also often challenging.
HHS Actions to Strengthen Primary Care
Since 2021, multiple HHS agencies have collaborated on developing a coordinated set of HHS-wide actions, with input from external stakeholders and members of the public, to strengthen primary care and advance health equity. These actions build on HHS’s longstanding work in primary care and leverage the Department’s policies, programs, and authorities.
HHS has adopted the definition of high-quality primary care put forth in the 2021 National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine consensus report, Implementing High-Quality Primary Care: Rebuilding the Foundation of Health Care :
The provision of whole-person,* integrated, accessible, and equitable health care by interprofessional teams who are accountable for addressing the majority of an individual’s health and wellness needs across settings and through sustained relationships with patients, families, and communities.
*Whole-person health focuses on well-being rather than the absence of disease. (NASEM, 2021)
With its set of actions and the adoption of this definition, HHS is capitalizing on its investments in primary care, strengthening multidisciplinary teams and team member roles, improving digital health tools, advancing primary care research, and supporting practice improvement to facilitate the provision of whole-person primary care.
The Department’s actions aim to advance health equity by improving equitable access to whole-person primary care; fostering ongoing, trusted relationships between patients and their primary care clinicians and teams; incorporating input from the community into primary care; increasing the diversity of the workforce; increasing cross-sector partnerships to coordinate preventive services and address social needs and environmental factors affecting health (see ACF, n.d.); supporting bi-directional integration of health care services across systems for people with behavioral health conditions; increasing resilience to disasters and emergencies through partnerships and workforce competency development; and advancing digital health care and primary care research using a health equity lens.
These HHS actions are complementary to and aligned with federal priorities such as the HHS Strategic Plan, the HHS Roadmap for Behavioral Health Integration, the HHS Strategic Approach to Addressing Social Determinants of Health to Advance Health Equity, the HHS Overdose Prevention Strategy and the White House Blueprint for Addressing the Maternal Health Crisis. (HHS, n.d.a, n.d.b, 2022a, 2022b; White House, 2022).
HHS is moving forward with implementing actions to strengthen primary care. Just last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Physician Fee Schedule Final Rule for Calendar Year 2024, which recognizes that primary care is instrumental in the delivery of high-quality, whole-person care (CMS, 2023a). Building an effective longitudinal relationship, in and of itself, is a key aspect of providing reasonable and necessary medical care and will enhance adherence to treatment recommendations after the visit and during future visits. It’s the work building this important relationship between the practitioner and patient for primary and longitudinal care that has been previously unrecognized and unaccounted for during evaluation and management visits. CMS will begin to provide certain additional payments for physicians and other practitioners delivering primary and longitudinal care starting in 2024.
Other implemented actions include the record number of patients served in rural and underserved communities through Health Resources and Services Administration-supported health centers; record numbers of scholarships and loan repayment assistance awards through the National Health Service Corps for physicians and nurses currently providing care in rural and underserved communities; a major expansion of training and teleconsultation access for primary care providers on treating mental health conditions and integrating mental health into school-based health centers; new grants supporting training for new primary care doctors to better serve individuals with limited English proficiency and individuals with disabilities; the release by the by the CMS Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation of a new payment and care delivery model, Making Care Primary, which aims to advance health equity and test the provision of enhanced payments, resources, and data to primary care clinicians; the expansion of disciplines whose services are paid by Medicare, to further support multidisciplinary teams; the distribution of new primary care residency slots to underserved areas; and actions that facilitate behavioral health and primary care integration (CMS, 2023b). For example, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s newly released Strategic Plan for 2023-2026 includes advancing the integration of behavioral and physical health care as one of five key priority areas (SAMHSA, 2023). Also, HHS is in the early stages of developing a Primary Care Dashboard that will monitor the “health” of our nation’s primary care system and the impacts of HHS actions to strengthen primary care.
These are just a few of the many actions HHS has recently taken to strengthen primary care. HHS has released an issue brief that describes more completely primary care actions already taken and highlights the Department’s planned future work to strengthen primary care (HHS, 2023). With the release of this issue brief, HHS aims to foster collective action among stakeholders and across the health care system and other sectors to maximize individual and population health and well-being; ensure access to affordable, comprehensive, whole-person primary care throughout the country; and make it possible for all communities to be served by trusted primary care clinicians and multidisciplinary teams who reflect the communities they serve.
A robust primary care foundation for our health care system is essential for improving the health of our people and advancing health equity. HHS is making strides in strengthening primary care in our nation and has plans for further actions, described in the issue brief. The Department will monitor the health of our primary care system to develop additional, data-informed interventions and maintain focus on strengthening primary care.
ACF (Administration for Children & Families). n.d. Medical-legal partnerships plus . Office of Community Services. https://www.acf.hhs.gov/ocs/programs/mlp-plus (accessed November 3, 2023).
CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services). 2023a. Calendar year (CY) 2024 Medicare physician fee schedule final rule . https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/fact-sheets/calendar-year-cy-2024-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-final-rule (accessed November 3, 2023).
CMS. 2023b. Making care primary (MCP) model. https://www.cms.gov/priorities/innovation/innovation-models/making-care-primary (accessed November 3, 2023).
HHS (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services). n.d.a. Strategic plan FY 2022-2026 . https://www.hhs.gov/about/strategic-plan/2022-2026/index.html (accessed November 3, 2023).
HHS. n.d.b. Overdose prevention strategy . https://www.hhs.gov/overdose-prevention/ (accessed November 3, 2023).
HHS. 2022a. HHS roadmap for behavioral health integration. https://www.hhs.gov/about/news/2022/12/02/hhs-roadmap-for-behavioral-health-integration-fact-sheet.html (accessed November 3, 2023).
HHS. 2022b. HHS’s strategic approach to addressing social determinants of health to advance health equity – at a glance . https://aspe.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/documents/aabf48cbd391be21e5186eeae728ccd7/SDOH-Action-Plan-At-a-Glance.pdf (accessed November 3, 2023).
HHS. 2023. Primary care issue brief . https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/primary-care-issue-brief.pdf (accessed November 7, 2023).
HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration). 2022. Primary care workforce: Projections, 2020-2035. Washington, DC: National Center for Health Workforce Analysis. https://bhw.hrsa.gov/sites/default/files/bureau-health-workforce/Primary-Care-Projections-Factsheet.pdf (accessed November 3, 2023).
Jabbarpour, Y., A. Greiner, A. Jetty, A. Kempski, D. Kamerow, G. Walter, and J. Sibel. 2022. Relationships matter: How usual is usual source of (primary) care? Washington, DC: Primary Care Collaborative. https://thepcc.org/sites/default/files/resources/pcc-evidence-report-2022_1.pdf (accessed November 3, 2023).
Mendel, P., C. A. Gidengil, A. Tomoaia-Cotisel, S. Mann, A. J. Rose, K. J. Leuschner, N. Qureshi, V. Kareddy, J. L. Sousa, and D. Kim. 2021. Heath services and primary care research study: Comprehensive report. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation. https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RRA1503-1.html (accessed November 3, 2023).
NASEM (National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine). 2021. Implementing high-quality primary care: Rebuilding the foundation of health care (Highlights). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://nap.nationalacademies.org/resource/25983/Highlights_High-Quality%20Primary%20Care-4.23.21_final.pdf (accessed November 3, 2023).
SAMSHA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration). 2023. SAMSHA’s 2023-2026 strategic plan . https://www.samhsa.gov/about-us/strategic-plan (accessed November 3, 2023).
Steinwald, B., P. B. Ginsburg, C. Brandt, S. Lee, and K. Patel. 2019. We need more primary care physicians: Here’s why and how . Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution. https://www.brookings.edu/articles/we-need-more-primary-care-physicians-heres-why-and-how (accessed November 3, 2023).
The White House. 2022. White House blueprint for addressing the maternal health crisis . https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/Maternal-Health-Blueprint.pdf (accessed November 3, 2023).
Levine, R., R. Burciaga Valdez, C. Brooks-LaSure, J. Hild, M. Tripathi, R. Tso, M. Delphin-Rittmon, and C. Johnson. 2023. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Is Taking Action to Strengthen Primary Care. NAM Perspectives . Commentary, National Academy of Medicine, Washington, DC. https://doi.org/10.31478/202311b .
ADM Rachel Levine, MD, is the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health. R. Burciaga Valdez, PhD, MHSA, is Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, MPP, is Administrator, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Jeff Hild, JD, is Acting Assistant Secretary and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Administration for Children and Families. Micky Tripathi, PhD, MPP, is the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. Roselyn Tso, MS, is Director of the Indian Health Service. Miriam Delphin-Rittmon, PhD, is the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use. Carole Johnson, MA, is Administrator, Health Resources and Services Administration.
None to disclose.
Questions or comments should be directed to [email protected] .
The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and not necessarily of the authors’ organizations, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), or the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (the National Academies). The paper is intended to help inform and stimulate discussion. It is not a report of the NAM or the National Academies. Copyright by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
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No ‘temporary cease-fire’ without return of hostages, Netanyahu says
Secretary of State Antony Blinken, in Israel on Friday, pushed Israeli leaders to protect civilians in the Gaza Strip and to take “humanitarian pauses” to facilitate the flow of aid and the release of hostages. Israel would agree to no “temporary cease-fire” that did not involve the return of hostages, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has restricted Pentagon transportation for official travel to Israel. A senior defense official said that “it’s just not a safe time to travel there.”
- USAID staffers urge Biden to push immediate cease-fire
- Pentagon curtails air travel to Israel for senior U.S. officials, including Congress
- Israel confirms strike on ambulance it says was used by Hamas
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Israeli forces advanced deeper into Gaza on Monday, unleashing devastating airstrikes overnight. Communication services gradually returned to parts of the Gaza Strip on Monday after another blackout . Follow live updates to understand what’s behind the Israel-Gaza war .
Hostages: Israeli officials say Hamas militants abducted about 240 hostages in a highly organized attack . Four hostages have been released — two Americans and two Israelis — as families hold on to hope . One released Israeli hostage recounted the “spiderweb” of Gaza tunnels she was held in.
Humanitarian aid: The Palestine Red Crescent Society said it has received over 300 trucks with food, medicine and water to the Gaza Strip through Egypt’s Rafah crossing . However, the PRCS said, there hasn’t been permission yet to bring in fuel, which powers the enclave’s hospitals, water pumps, taxis and more .
Israeli-Palestinian conflict: The Hamas -controlled Gaza Strip has a complicated history , and its rulers have long been at odds with the Palestinian Authority , the U.S.-backed government in the West Bank. Here is a timeline of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict .
- Israel-Gaza war live updates: Netanyahu floats plan to control Gaza security for ‘indefinite period’ after war Just now Israel-Gaza war live updates: Netanyahu floats plan to control Gaza security for ‘indefinite period’ after war Just now
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How to write a good status update
Product Marketing Manager
This is a guest post from Baron Schwartz , Founder and CEO at VividCortex .
I’ve seen my share of terrible status updates. As Founder and CEO of a SaaS platform for database performance management, VividCortex , I know the power of a great status update to build or destroy trust. Unfortunately, I see more bad status updates than good ones.
It’s a shame, really, because a bad status update can be worse than doing nothing at all. Status updates – especially in moments of potential crisis – are a key piece of your relationship with your customers. Doing a better job with status updates is a high-value activity in my book.
I prefer to buy, rather than build, solutions when possible. I therefore have lots of SaaS vendors running key parts of our business at VividCortex. From my perspective as a customer, most of their status updates are garbage. Most vendors do an awful job telling me the truth about how their systems are running. I can’t figure out the real situation and what the vendor’s doing about it. The signal I get is avoidance, which erodes my trust in them.
I haven’t always done a great job with our own status updates at VividCortex, and that’s been a learning experience for me too. Unfortunately, although there’s a lot of guidance and examples on how to conduct and write good postmortems, there doesn’t seem to be much about service status update messages. I’d like to share what I’ve learned, as both a service provider and a customer, in the hopes that it helps you avoid some of the quicksand I’ve stepped into or the bad customer experiences I’ve had.
Why good status updates are hard
Good status updates during outages or incidents require a delicate balance of several factors. A proper approach should be (but not limited to):
- Informative and clear, yet brief
- Frequent, yet not noisy
- Honest, without needlessly airing dirty laundry
Some of these things are tough to achieve. For example, status updates are best when someone with serious language skills writes them. Good writing is actually hard, and it matters a lot for status updates! Yet at the same time, publishing status updates can’t be the sole privilege of the micromanaging perfectionist CEO (just an example, you understand). If the CEO wants to review and approve all status updates and isn’t available, customers won’t be kept up-to-date.
The most common problems that lead to bad status updates, in my experience, are:
- Poor writing skills
- Fear of consequences from being too clear
- Cultural or leadership problems (perhaps no one is responsible for status updates)
- Actual, intentional avoidance
- Failure to realize how important concise status updates are
I’ve found that some points are more important than others to get right (or avoid getting badly wrong). Here are some of the ways I’ve seen status updates go extremely sideways.
The evergreen status page is a lie
Your status page needs to actually reflect when there’s an outage. I can’t remember the number of times I’ve seen people tweeting their disgust about a company that’s lying about ongoing outages.
Recently, for example, I saw someone tweet to say they were experiencing problems using a company’s platform, and asking whether the platform was known to be in degraded status. One of that company’s other customers responded, saying sarcastically that their favorite part of every outage the company has is the status page that says everything’s working. It’s a scathing indictment of the company’s lack of willingness to acknowledge and communicate their problems.
If you’re going to lie on your status page, it’s time to seriously think about why you have it in the first place. And remember, failure to tell the truth is a lie, from the customer’s point of view. If nobody actually intends to hide an outage, but nevertheless nobody updates the status page, it’s still just as much of a lie.
By using passive voice, truth is concealed
I’ve noticed that a lot of engineers don’t know what passive voice is or how to write actively. Unfortunately, passive voice is one of the best ways to look like you’re trying to hide something. Passive voice is, at root, a refusal or inability to say who’s doing what. That’s an instant signal of avoidance to customers, intentional or not.
Consider the following status update:
[status] Monitoring: a fix has been implemented and we are monitoring the results.
The phrase “has been” is a classic pattern of passive voice. It refuses to identify a person or party as taking the action. If you use the phrase “we have…” it automatically becomes more active:
[status] Monitoring: we have implemented a fix and we are monitoring the results.
If you’re not that great of a writer, a quick path to a more active voice is to use a free online editor like Hemingway to compose your status update. It will flag problems such as passive voice. Another way is to use the “by zombies” heuristic. Try that with the headline of this section.
Obfuscated verbiage flummoxes cogitation
Passive voice isn’t the only way to make status updates unclear. Ten-dollar junk words are another common problem. Most words ending in “ization” are so-called “nominalizations” that hide the clarity and directness of the root word by making a noun out of a verb. The following words and phrases are always replaceable by better ones, or can just be deleted without replacement: implement, utilize, employ, assist, make use of, in order to, and facilitate.
Let’s edit the earlier status update one more time to make it better:
[status] Monitoring: we have fixed the issue and we are monitoring the results.
A common problem is words that can have several meanings, especially to non-native English speakers. Consider the word “over,” for example. In everyday usage, people will say things like “over an hour,” which is very vague. Does it mean “more than an hour ago,” or does it mean “during the past hour?” If you’re a Spanish-speaking native, “over” is pretty much synonymous for “on the subject of,” too.
There are many such examples. “While” can mean either “at the same time as” or “although.” Another troublesome word is “since,” which can mean “because” or “in the time period after X until now.”
I prefer to fix these issues by using the unambiguous word or phrase (because, more than, although) and providing enough context to clarify if I can’t.
This might sound like nothing more than grammar nitpicking, but again, customers will read between the lines of a wordy or vague status update message. What they hear is more important than what you mean to say.
Infrequent updates create worried customers
Mark Imbriaco recommends status updates every 20 minutes if possible, depending on the nature and duration of the incident, and I agree. If I don’t hear anything from the vendor for a while, I start to wonder what’s going on. Surely someone knows that there are hundreds or thousands of customers hanging on every word? Surely they can take 30 seconds to just say they’re still alive and working on it?
If nothing’s changing and it’s going to be a long outage, you can signal that with a status update conveying that it’s going to take a while to know more. Then you can just follow up every couple of hours.
For example, during a scheduled maintenance period from Hipchat, they posted updates such as “Our scheduled maintenance is ongoing. We are currently in the process of enabling connections to our newer database, and expect to re-enable logins shortly.” Customers reading this status update know exactly what to expect from the service. Another good example is the Etsy status updates , which show ongoing, reassuring communications during outages.
Vague updates leave lingering questions
Specific updates are always better than vague ones. “We have applied a fix.” What fix, exactly? Did you redeploy, patch, fail over, what did you do? “We are monitoring the results.” Great, but what are you seeing?
I’d prefer “we are monitoring the results as replication catches up,” or “we are monitoring the results and it looks good so far.” Tell me more whenever you can.
You can improve it even further, by removing the vague pronoun “we” and instead stating specifically who took action. This helps customers make a mental connection that real people and real teams are at work. Try this:
[status] Monitoring: Our SF-based SysAdmin team has redeployed the service and we are monitoring the results as we send partial traffic to it. It looks good so far
Non-apologies hurt credibility
You don’t have to apologize in status updates. Those kinds of things are often better to defer to a postmortem write-up. But if you’re going to say anything, say it directly and squarely. Your apology should never point fingers at another party, should never say “apologize,” should never be followed by a “but” phrase. Above all it should never make customer pain abstract or potential. Here are some really bad ways to do it:
- We apologize for… (apologize is a fancy word, and what’s this abstract “we” stuff?)
- I’m sorry that our provider is goofing up… (NO BUCK PASSING!)
- I’m sorry for any inconvenience… (oh, so the “inconvenience” is merely theoretical?)
- We know this is frustrating, but we… (but what? but nothing!)
I know sometimes it can be frustrating not to be able to fix a problem people are complaining about. I was once the target of a bunch of irate tweets because my marketing automation provider wasn’t sending out emails for ebook downloads. Everyone was feeling cheated and tricked. I felt there was little I could do because my provider was stonewalling me, refusing to acknowledge or respond. The temptation to blame them in public was strong, because I thought it might help motivate them. I gave in and pointed the finger at them, and sure enough, it immediately made the problem worse. The right thing to do was tweet back direct links to downloads, and an apology while I applied pressure on the vendor in private.
For more on this topic, read the related post on the Basecamp blog.
Casual, overly familiar tone destroys sense of caring
A status update is the last place to crack a joke, be flippant, or dismiss the seriousness of the incident. Every incident, no matter how minor, is worth treating seriously.
One of the most cringe-inducing moments I’ve had was when I saw someone tweet the following from our Twitter account:
We’re having temporary issues with a server. No data will be lost, but customers may be affected. No worries, our brainiacs are on it.
This was the moment when I realized I’d really screwed up as CEO. I wanted to bury my face in my hands, because I knew the ugly truth:
- A subset of our customers were definitely affected. And definitely had worries.
- We knew exactly what the server issues were and we didn’t say.
- The whole tone, although meant to be reassuring that it wasn’t a major issue, instead conveyed lack of urgency or awareness of the importance to customers.
- Vague. Passive voice. Theoretical acknowledgement of non-problem. Flippant. Could we do worse if we tried?
I knew it was my fault that this happened. I had granted Twitter access only to one person, who didn’t have enough context to understand how to communicate what the engineers were indicating was the problem. I hadn’t trained our staff. I hadn’t given people tools to communicate clearly (this was the day I resolved to finally sign up for a Statuspage account and decided that it was no longer a someday-priority). I hadn’t built a culture of transparency, honesty, and accountability to customers.
Avoiding the worst mistakes isn’t that hard
As I said in the beginning, most of the issues I’ve seen aren’t that hard to avoid, especially at a small company like VividCortex, where our headcount is currently about 25. Here’s my take on things at this point in time:
- A tool like Statuspage, wired up to a Twitter account and the company’s chat channel, is vital for both internal and external communication. We had some incidents that were much worse than they needed to be, both for us and for customers, precisely because we weren’t getting everyone on the same page (literally) internally and externally. It wasn’t hard to fix at all. We just had to do the basics.
- If you’re going to have a status page, make sure it’s updated honestly, immediately, and clearly. Put customers first: they need, above all, to know how serious things are, what’s happening NOW, that you’re working on it, and your best effort at a prognosis right now.
- Talk about service status updates with your team. Tell them your values. Tell them nobody’ll get fired for admitting what’s going on. Tell them customers come first. Tell them that their first action shouldn’t be to start investigating. It should be to say “There’s something to investigate” and then to investigate. (Call 911 before beginning to administer CPR!)
- Trust your team to do the right thing and make sure it’s done in public, in the main chat channel, so everyone learns by osmosis and understands the example they need to follow when it’s their turn. (We’re huge advocates of ChatOps at VividCortex.) Wiring up your chat bot to your Statuspage account means that everyone is empowered to send out an update at any time.
By the way, I wrote this blog post in part as an ongoing way to communicate to my own team how I want us to behave in the face of outages!
I hope my perspective has helped show the importance of avoiding some of the biggest mistakes, and grabbing some of the easiest wins, with service status update messages. Please leave your feedback in the comments or tweet to me at @xaprb !
Try Statuspage for free
We like to think Statuspage is an important tool for any business. You could sweat the details on hosting and providing the page yourself. Or sign up for Statuspage and focus on what really matters to your team and customers.
And, of course, our free plan is free forever.
This post was originally published on the Statuspage blog in 2016.
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World News in Brief: Ukraine dam disaster update, childcare investment, healthcare under fire in Sudan
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Much of the damage caused by the destruction of Ukraine’s Kakhovka dam in June is “irreversible”, with likely changes to the environment that impact ecosystems and human health.
These are the grim findings of an assessment published by the UN Environment Programme ( UNEP ) on Thursday, which calls for both immediate and long-term remediation measures.
Hundreds of square kilometres were flooded in the disaster, and thousands of square kilometres of reservoir and wetlands were desiccated.
UNEP’s preliminary assessment carried out at the request of the Ukrainian Government concluded that consequences of the dam breach will be felt “for decades”, reaching far beyond Ukraine’s borders. The report reviewed environmental impacts both upstream and downstream, such as chemical contamination and ecological damage to protected areas.
The authors of the report wrote that “a detailed estimation of the full impacts on irrigation, drinking water and supply of water to industry, including the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, and associated human health impacts, fall outside the scope of this rapid assessment but pose a substantial concern.”
They concluded that more assessments will be needed to address the full scale of the disaster’s environmental impacts and that financial and technical support is “urgent and indispensable” for a sustainable reconstruction, restoration of damaged habitats and disaster waste management.
Sudan: Civilian attacks continue
The UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, Clementine Nkweta-Salami, says she is deeply concerned by continued reports of attacks against civilian infrastructure, noting that “even hospital wards full of sick and wounded children are not safe’ from conflict.”
Since the start of the war between the national army and the Rapid Support Forces militia in April, the World Health Organization ( WHO ) has verified 58 attacks on healthcare, said UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric on Thursday.
More than 70 per cent of health facilities in conflict areas in Sudan are now out of service.
Over the weekend, the water supply in Omdurman in the state of Khartoum was temporarily suspended after a water treatment centre came under fire.
“Our colleagues on the ground say that this is extremely worrying, given the ongoing cholera outbreak in Khartoum State and other parts of the country”, said Mr. Dujarric.
More than 1,600 suspected cholera cases – including about 67 deaths – have been reported so far, “and we and our partners are scaling up our response to the outbreak”, he added.
Closing childcare policy gaps offers high return on investment: ILO
Providing continuous childcare to parents from the birth of their child to the start of mandatory schooling could bring a more than threefold return on investment, the International Labour Organization ( ILO ) said on Thursday.
“Such investments could also lead to reductions in gender and other inequalities, generation of decent jobs, improvements in health and wellbeing, and help create a path to social justice,” ILO said.
ILO’s research covering 82 countries found that each US dollar invested in closing the gap in childcare between the end of parental leave and the first day of school, would bring a $3.76 rise in global Gross Domestic Product by 2035, as parents – mainly women – exchange unpaid care work for paid and formal employment. Currently, only 26 countries have childcare laws which allow to bridge this gap.
The agency projects that the measure would create 300 million jobs worldwide and reduce the global gender gap in monthly earnings from 20 per cent in 2019 to eight per cent in 2035.
ILO said that providing “universal, high-quality childcare services staffed by trained and valued early childhood education personnel” would require additional spending equivalent to 1.5 per cent of global GDP.
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How to write a team status update (that will actually get read)
10 simple tips to remember when sharing your next status update.
The complexity and pace of work only continue to increase — and at times, it can feel like chaos.
But the humble status update (or status report) is a simple communication tool that distributed teams can use to hold together even the most complex of work streams.
In this article, I walk through the definition of a status update, plus five tips for writing super-useful team check-ins that help you and your teammates do your best work, together.
Defining the team update
What is a team status update? A status update is a written communication tool teams use to describe the current state of a task or project.
I've been thinking about status updates and project status report templates ever since we started Range. Over that time, I've had a chance to work with dozens of organizations, all of which have a practice and method for sharing status reports. Through that experience, I've realized that there's a huge difference between a mediocre update and a great one. All project status report updates convey information. But a great status update aligns teams and stakeholders, builds connectedness, and solves problems.
The only way we ever really know what other teams and teammates are doing is with a humble status update. You might hear one in a team meeting, or while you're making espresso, or read one on in your inbox. But chances are, you've never thought much about what makes a good status update.
Unfortunately, this crucial skill is often overlooked. It's rarely mentioned in any company training, and I've found it challenging to locate good advice on the topic. So if you'd like to master this seemingly simple art, here are a few tips that should help you along the way.
1. Say something new in your team status update
Vagueness is the enemy of a great daily project status report or weekly update. If you've caught yourself giving stakeholders or your project manager an update that sounds something like, “We're making good progress on project X,” then you're veered into the land of the vague.
The problem with repeating the “We're working on it.” message several times in a row is that doubt starts to creep in and risk is introduced. People will begin to wonder what you or your team is doing and whether you're really making progress. A good status update should banish this doubt, and you'll need to provide detail on the current status to do that.
For example, I've been working on this blog post for a few days. But in my written daily updates to my team, I never once wrote “Working on a blog post.” Instead, I got specific and showed my work. I wrote “Sketching an outline,” then “Writing a draft,” then “Finishing up copy edits.”
By giving just a little bit more detail, you can show your team that you're making progress. The right amount of specificity can eliminate doubt on your team, and help open up opportunities for collaboration and feedback.
However, there is such a thing as too much detail. Sometimes in a daily status update, or weekly status report, people will deliver a laundry list of everything they're doing. Laundry lists make for an extra boring update. So if you're feeling the urge to include everything, take a moment to think about what parts of your work are relevant to the team, and how you can be more concise. A simple trick here is to take an editing pass after writing your update and put the most important items at the top. Often this act of ordering tasks and projects is enough to clarify what's really important to share in your reports.
With Check-ins in Range , you can easily share structured, async updates with your team.
If you're familiar with standup meetings, Range Check-Ins will replace those. You can even call out a "Main Focus" to keep everyone aware of your high-priority tasks and projects.
2. Explain why the work matters in your status update
At the beginning of any project, we often underestimate how important it is to communicate purpose. We tend to jump into the “what” of the work, without first covering the “why.”
For example, I recently did some work to improve commenting in Range. When I shared the first round of designs, I got some curious looks from one of my co-founders. At that moment, I realized I hadn't communicated the “why” well enough. I paused, backed up, and explained that we were getting lots of requests for commenting, even though we already had built the feature. That context was enough to clear up any confusion and set the stage for some great design feedback.
As humans, we tend to think that other people have the same context in their heads as we do in ours.
It's natural. But with status updates, it can cause big problems. When you leave out the “why” behind your work, others might not be able the guess the purpose, and may not even feel comfortable asking.
Without clarity on purpose, teams will drift out of alignment. If you find yourself buried in disagreements about low-level details, take a few steps back. You may have forgotten to communicate the project's purpose.
Communicating purpose doesn't have to take a lot of time.
Consider reading this update: “Moved sharing buttons to the left side of the blog.”
That probably has people wondering why the buttons moved.
Just a little purpose can help a lot: “Moved sharing buttons to the left side of the blog because no one was clicking on them at the top of the page.”
You don't need to be a broken record, always repeating the purpose of a project. But in my experience, you probably need to reiterate a purpose 2-3 times more than you'd think. And at the start of any project, getting crystal clear on the purpose is essential, especially for remote teams.
3. Be honest about what's working -- and what's not
It's normal to want to hide project risk and things that are not going well in project updates. I personally hate when my projects are going sideways. Or when I am at risk of missing my project goals, project budget, overall project timeline, or important project milestones. I feel the strong tug to stay silent, rather than ask for help. I think somewhere deep down, I worry that I'll look bad.
I realize how silly that sounds. Hiding a failing project or late milestones won't make your project go better. And the team around you, whether peers or managers, are all there to help you succeed. Any good manager will cherish the opportunity to help you when you're feeling stuck. And any good team will help you when you run into roadblocks. That's the whole point of a team, to help you keep your project on track!
What's the key to creating an environment where people will share daily or weekly status updates about projects going poorly? You have to deliberately design a culture that reminds people they're safe.
If you want teammates to share bad news, you need to create an environment that minimizes the fear of looking bad, and reinforces that we're here to help each other succeed.
If you're interested in ways to build this kind of culture, check out the articles we've written on psychological safety and how to build trust on your team .
4. Include outside commitments in your status update
There's so much that goes into a typical day: ideas, plans, schedule, work, family, taking care of yourself. And there are even more issues that can get in the way of any given project. You might need to stay home to take care of a sick toddler, work on an urgent project for another team, or spend some time interviewing candidates.
We often have a tendency to hide all that other work from our teams. You might think that they don't need to know what's happening on other projects or in your personal life. Or you might feel guilty that other challenges or work has taken precedence over something you wanted to get done.
But if we hide all these other commitments from our teams, they'll just be left wondering why we haven't been making progress on the projects that are relevant to them.
With a lack of context about your total workload, people may think that you don't care about a project's success, even though you do!
The next time you're making slow progress on a project, consider sharing some of your other commitments with your team. Don't be embarrassed by outside commitments. They're real work!
If you're a manager checking in with your team , it's a good idea to include this extra work in the status update documents, even if it's work that others might not consider your team's core focus.
For example, you could write, “We made slower progress on other goals this week because the team was focusing on critical bug fixes, interviews, and quarterly planning.”
5. Stick to a cadence for your team status updates
Writing a status update on a regular cadence is a good project management solution and it's also a bit like exercise or meditation. The practice builds on itself, becoming easier at each iteration, and accruing more benefits for current and future projects over time.
Keeping a cadence is less work for you. If you share updates sparsely, you'll likely be interrupted by people wondering what you're doing. Your manager, not knowing when the next status update is expected, might swing by your desk to see what you're doing.
By keeping a cadence, I find that it calms down the people around me. When people wonder what I'm doing, they know from experience that they can find out in my next status update.
I also find that a cadence, whether daily or weekly, makes crafting an update easier for me. When I'm dealing with shorter periods of time, it's easier to remember the scope of what happened. And the more practice I have in assembling a status update, the better I get at it.
And finally, as companies grow larger, communication needs to transition from something that's ad-hoc to something that's actively designed. Ad-hoc updates don't work very well as companies grow, and you'll likely notice that some people are unintentionally left out of the loop. By sticking to a cadence , it becomes much easier to deliberately design the audience and content of a status update, and make sure that the right information is always being shared to the right people
How To Use Range for Writing Amazing Team Status Updates
I enjoy talking about what I'm working on, both in meetings and during ad-hoc conversations. But I also know that spoken status updates simply don't scale as companies grow.
Here's the problem: verbal status updates don't connect ideas across large groups of people or large spans of time. If I share something in a meeting, you might forget it by the end of the day, and some other person that wasn't present missed their chance to learn about it.
So as your company grows, it becomes essential to transition from verbal to written forms, like Range Check-ins .
With Range Check-Ins, you can:
- Reduce meeting load by keeping every team member informed and connected
- Easily share your plan and what you accomplished
- Customize questions & prompts
- Add tasks from your project management tools
- Share updates via Slack or Microsoft Teams
⭐️ The collaboration you want — without the extra meetings.
⚡️ start your first range check-in., try range for free.
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Social, Political, Economic and Environmental Issues That Affect Us All
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World News in Brief: UNCTAD development finance call, Nepal quake update, religious freedom in Nicaragua
- Tuesday, November 07, 2023
The world risks failing the 880 million people living the world’s Least Developed Countries if soaring debt and a chronic lack of international funds prevent them from getting ahead.
That’s the message from the UN’s trade and development body UNCTAD , which called on Tuesday for urgent reform of the international financial system to support the world’s 46 Least Developed Countries.
In line with the Sustainable Development Goals , or SDGs, these most vulnerable economies urgently require foreign investment to add value to their economic output, avoid debt distress and finance a low-carbon transition.
UNCTAD Secretary-General Rebeca Grynspan stressed that the success of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is “inextricably linked to the progress of these nations”.
The UN agency says that achieving better social protection and decent jobs will require a cash injection equivalent to 45 per cent of each Least Developed Country’s total economic output.
But multiple global crises have hampered growth and left the world’s most vulnerable countries with a debt burden which soared to $27 billion in 2021.
To help, UNCTAD economists called for urgent debt relief and a “substantial” increase in accessible development and climate finance for LDCs, including grants and low-cost loans.
Children account for half the dead and injured in Nepal quake
Almost half of those reported killed and injured in the deadly earthquake that struck western Nepal at the weekend are children, UN Children’s Fund ( UNICEF ) said on Tuesday.
According to latest Government figures, the 6.4 magnitude earthquake that struck shortly before midnight on 3 November claimed 153 lives and injured more than 338 people. In addition, a 5.8 magnitude aftershock hit the affected areas, exacerbating fear among the survivors, in particular children.
“Tragically, and yet again, so many lives have been lost in this devastating earthquake. Children are disproportionately affected and are forced to spend the nights out in the cold,” said Alice Akunga, UNICEF Representative to Nepal.
“These children and their families are in desperate need of medical support, shelter, safe drinking water, food, blankets, and warm clothes as the winter sets in,” she added.
UN teams are on the ground supporting relief efforts, in coordination with Government agencies. However, with winter setting in across the Himalayas, scaled assistance is urgently needed.
“UNICEF is doing everything possible, but we urgently need more help to respond to the needs of children and women in health, nutrition, education, protection, and water, sanitation and hygiene,” Ms. Akunga said.
Humanitarians supporting those affected also have to contend with remote locations, difficult terrain and high-altitudes.
UN agencies and aid partners must rely on helicopters to ferry personnel and relief supplies as there are no roads, Rafeeque Ahmad Siddiqui, Head of Karnali Field Office at UNDP -Nepal, told UN News in an interview.
Listen to the interview here:
Nicaragua: UN rights experts call for release of Catholic bishop
UN-appointed independent human rights experts on Tuesday demanded an end to the arbitrary detention by Nicaraguan authorities of the Bishop of Matagalpa, Monsignor Rolando José Álvarez, following the release of 12 Catholic priests last month.
“We are deeply concerned about the systematic patterns of harassment against members of the Catholic Church and other religious denominations by Nicaraguan authorities,” the two Special Rapporteurs said.
“The Government must immediately and unconditionally release Monsignor Álvarez and protect the right to freedom of religion or belief in the country,” added Nazila Ghanea , and Irene Khan .
The experts expressed their grave concern in an official communication sent to the Government of Nicaragua on 2 August.
It is estimated that since 2022, Nicaraguan authorities have cancelled the legal status of at least 1,000 non-profit organisations, of which more than 320 are said to be of a religious character.
Earlier this year, the Government cancelled the legal status of the historic Central American University (UCA) run by the Catholic order of the Society of Jesus and confiscated its facilities, together with two evangelical Christian universities and another associated with the Catholic Church.
The experts stressed these acts are contrary to international law and appear to be part of a broader pattern of repression against different elements of Nicaraguan civil society, especially those who voice criticism of the Government.
Special Rapporteurs and other Human Rights Council -appointed independent experts are not UN staff, nor do they receive payment for their work.
© UN News (2023) — All Rights Reserved Original source: UN News
Writing status updates: Tips and phrases
The key to any successful relationship – business or personal – is trust. Clear, transparent and timely communication helps to build this trust. I spend much of my time providing on-the-job training and support to a logistics client. That support is often in the form of helping them write emails to customers and suppliers updating them on the statuses of certain orders and deliveries. My client often needs to let their customers or suppliers ‘know where they stand,’ in the form of email status updates on orders or shipments: ‘We have a new delivery date.’ ‘We have just determined the requested item is out of stock.’ ‘There is a problem with customs clearance.’ ‘The item has been shipped!’ Whatever the message, my client is dedicated to communicating professionally and to keeping their partner’s trust. Just as with any email, you’ll have to decide whether the tone is formal, informal or neutral. But there are a few things to remember when updating people or letting them know the status of an order, a payment, a shipment, etc.
1. Always let people know why you’re writing
This is true for almost all emails. It’s less crucial if you have an ongoing email ‘conversation’ with someone.
- I’m writing to let you know about order number….
- I have some information for you about…
- I wanted to update you about…
- We’re writing regarding….
- We’re contacting you regarding your order number …
The “I” is a personal statement. Using “we” implies you are writing as a company, but are open and friendly. You can use the phrases above in less formal situations, or if you have an existing relationship with the recipient. But if the situation is more formal, then there are better, stronger phrases to use:
- The purpose of this email is to update you on the status of….
- This is to inform you about the delivery of…
- Following is the status of order…
- Please find attached a summary of …
- This is to inform you that the delivery of ______ has been scheduled
Adopting the 3rd person instead of the 1st person almost always makes your emails more formal. Avoid terms like “We hereby inform you” – this feels very legalistic.
2. Give them the news, good or bad, as simply as possible
Good news is easy:
- I am pleased to inform you that….
- I have some good news about your delivery of…
- I have spoken with the forwarder and am happy to say that…
Bad news is tricky. No one wants bad news, so don’t beat about the bush.
- Unfortunately, the shipment has been delayed until…
- Unfortunately, the material you ordered is no longer available.
- I/We regret to inform you that…”
- I am afraid we are not able to…
- Please accept my/our apologies for this misunderstanding/delay/inconvenience.
- We’re deeply sorry that …
- Due to the airline employees’ strike, the order is grounded in Frankfurt.
- It has come to our attention that the deadline that was agreed to cannot be met.
Giving bad news can be very complicated. It’s important that you acknowledge that the bad news is a problem or an inconvenience. Be brief. Be respectful. Be understanding. Explain but be careful that is doesn’t seem like you’re making excuses. Offer some alternative or solution, if possible:
- We apologise for this inconvenience. We hope the strike will be resolved by Friday and that the shipments will return to normal by the following Monday.
- Although we cannot provide the items xyz123 you requested, we can offer the item abc456, which are comparable.
3. Develop trust by making yourself available to them
You’ve probably seen them hundreds of times but they work!
- If you have any further questions, feel free to contact me
- If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
- Please contact me with any questions you might have about this.
- Please let me know how I can assist you with any other questions.
Consistency is key
If you adopt a formal tone at the beginning, try to maintain that throughout the email. Or, if you decide it should be friendly and less formal at the beginning, stay less formal and friendly through the entire email.
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8 Eight Sample Emails to Update or Inform Your Boss
Updating your boss on your current tasks before the due date is essential. To this regard, to stand out and be an indispensable employee, you should endeavor to update your boss regularly on any given task, whilst being meticulous with other duties.
In addition, ensure that your updates and information are written or properly documented. This serves as a form of evidence against a denial that such an update was never reported. Hence, by properly documenting your update, there’s evidence to substantiate your claims.
In this post, you will get tips and sample letters/email formats you can use as a template to give updates to your boss. However, bear in mind that these samples aren’t to give updates to your boss only. The samples provided in this article can also be used to provide updates to your clients and customers.
Notwithstanding the samples, it is important that you take note of the dos and don’ts listed in this article.
- Give a concise description of the project, that is, when writing an email update your boss or a client on a given task, the facts should be short and straightforward as the aim is to remind your boss and not to provide a deep explanation into information they already have.
- In instances where there are quantifiable data to be presented, it’s better to represent this in a table format, chart or graph in your update to your boss. Your boss will appreciate this step as it’s easier to source data when represented in the right format.
- When writing to update your boss, avoid the use of extremely technical words and phrases except those that your boss is familiar with. As much as it is best that an email update to your boss is written professionally, the usage of words that are overly technical is not advised. Bosses are known to be busy and most times they scan through updates especially when it’s not the final piece.
- In addition, when updating your boss, do not use abbreviations except it has been clearly spelt out in a previous paragraph or they’re abbreviations that are common in your profession.
- In your email update to your boss, ensure that the report is fluid and each paragraph flows simultaneously. Dot your ‘I’s and cross your ‘T’s. Use Caps, sections, and subsections for easy readability where necessary.
- Give yourself enough time to prepare the update to your boss. Don’t rush it but jot down each point as you remember, then create a well-readable piece.
How to Write Emails Informing Your Boss of an Appointment (With 7 Samples)
How to Write an Update Email to Your Boss Sample
Start with a clear and concise subject line.
Your subject line should communicate the purpose of the email in a few words. For example, “Project Update” or “Weekly Progress Report” are effective subject lines.
Provide a Brief Overview of The Project or Task
In the first paragraph, provide a summary of the project or task you are updating your boss on. This will help your boss quickly understand the context of your email.
Include Progress Updates
In the body of the email, provide detailed updates on the progress you’ve made since your last update. Use bullet points to make the information easy to read and understand.
Highlight Any Challenges or Roadblocks
If you’ve encountered any challenges or obstacles, be sure to mention them in your email. Include any solutions or ideas you have for overcoming these challenges.
Request Feedback or Input
At the end of your email, invite your boss to provide feedback or ask for their input on any decisions that need to be made. This shows that you value their opinion and are open to collaboration.
End with A Positive Tone
End your email on a positive note, thanking your boss for their time and support. This helps build a good relationship with your boss and shows your appreciation for their role in the project.
Sample 1 Letter to Update Your Boss
Sample 2 email to update your boss.
Sample 3 Letter to Update Your Boss
Sample 4 Weekly Update Email to Manager
Sample 5 How to Give a Status Update Example
Sample 6 how To Write an Update Email to Your Boss Sample
How to Write a Mail to Boss for Daily Report
For sample 6, the body of the letter is short and the update is to be found in a separate attachment, usually a Microsoft Word document or notepad. Don’t forget to attach a well-written update and attach it to the letter or email.
Also, for email letters such as Sample 4 and 6, you do not require an address, the email address of the recipient serves as the address it will be served. This email has all you need to send progress reports to your customer.
About The Author
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5 steps to writing a clear project brief
Quick, one of your project stakeholders needs an easy way to get a summary of key information about your project… what do you send them?
What is a project brief?
A project brief is a short description of key elements of your project. Think of it as a quick summary for project stakeholders and cross-functional collaborators. Your project brief should communicate your project requirements—without bogging your stakeholders down with too many details.
Like most elements in project management , there’s no one-size-fits-all project brief template or style. The project brief you create will depend on the scope and complexity of your project. For some projects, your brief might be as short as a paragraph, for others, it might get up to a page long.
Plan to create your project brief at the very beginning of your project. If you’re getting started with project management, you may have encountered other elements of early project planning. Here’s how a project brief compares to other project management elements:
Project brief vs. creative brief
Like the name suggests, a creative brief is a guide for a creative project. Your creative brief should include your project audience, messaging and tone, distribution process, project budget, and timeline. If you’re working with an outside agency or creative team, your creative brief might also function as a statement of work (SOW) , which defines the scope of your project and project deliverables.
A project brief is an overview of the key elements of your project. If you’re working on a creative project, your project design might include some elements of your creative brief—like the timeline and project audience—but your project brief should be shorter and simpler than your creative brief.
Project brief vs. project plan
Essentially, your project brief should be a condensed version of your project plan. Your project plan should include seven elements:
Stakeholders and roles
Milestones and deliverables
Timeline and schedule
Project communication plan
Your project brief should only include your project objectives, timeline and schedule, target audience , and project scope . Think of your project brief as a shorter document that high-level project stakeholders can read and project team members can check back on frequently.
Project brief vs. executive summary
Whether or not you create a project brief or an executive summary depends on the scope of your project and the stakeholders involved. Just like a project brief, an executive summary is an overview of your project information—but it’s generally geared towards executive stakeholders. If you’re working on an expansive project with high-level executives or if you've drafted a business case for your initiative, consider creating an executive summary. On the other hand, if you’re working on an initiative with cross-functional collaborators, create a project brief.
Key elements of project briefs
Your project brief is an overview of your upcoming project. It should include key information about important project details, so your project team can align and understand what this initiative is about. Typically, your project brief will include four key elements:
The first part of your project brief should include the project background. The project background section is a space for you to provide any context your stakeholders might not have. Aim to answer questions like:
Why are you working on this project?
What business needs, research, or customer feedback, if any, led to this project?
Do any previous projects relate to this one and, if so, how did they go and what did your team learn?
Project objectives and success metrics
Most of your early project planning documentation should include your project objectives in one form or another. Connecting everyday work to team or company goals helps team members stay motivated, aligned, and on track. In fact, according to the Anatomy of Work Index , team members who understand how their individual work adds value to their organization are 2X as motivated as their counterparts.
Make sure to include your timeline in your project brief. Your project timeline is the best way to give your team a clear idea of key dates and important project milestones . After all, the success of your project depends on whether or not you can stick to your project timeline and deliver your project objectives on time.
Your target audience is the reason you’re working on this project. No matter what type of project you’re working on, it’s important to include your target audience in your project brief so everyone on your team is on the same page about who the audience is.
5 steps to writing a clear project brief, with examples
There are four main elements to a project brief, but five steps to actually complete one. If you’re just getting started, don’t be afraid to break your brief into four paragraphs or sections, until weaving the sections together feels more natural. Additionally, feel free to use bullet points, link to other documents, or use any images if necessary. Ultimately, your project brief is only helpful if you (and your project stakeholders) think it is.
1. Add relevant context
The best way to begin your project brief is to add any relevant context or background information. That way, everyone starts the project with equal footing, and any cross-functional stakeholders approach the rest of your project brief (or other process documentation ) with the background information they need.
Let’s say your company has developed a gaming app where people can play virtual games with their friends. In this project, you’re developing a marketing campaign to support the launch of your newest product: an in-app live video experience. To begin your project brief, you might write something like:
Currently, chat is our second most popular feature (first is connecting with friends via email). 84% of users use chat in some capacity. Additionally, in user feedback sessions, 63% of users reported being on a video or voice call with their friends on another platform while using our app. We believe that, by bringing video chat into the app experience itself, we’ll be able to increase retention and potentially upgrade free users to our monthly plan.
2. Bring in project objectives and success metrics
Project objectives are the assets and deliverables you plan to deliver at the end of your project. Good project objectives help you get a clear understanding of your project. Your project objectives will define your success metrics, which helps you evaluate the success of your project once you finish it. Ideally, aim to set SMART project objectives. SMART is an acronym to help you set great goals. It stands for:
Continuing with our video chat example:
Most users have learned to use a different video service while playing on our app. This marketing campaign will educate and promote this new feature, to increase adoption and encourage users to move away from video chat on other platforms and onto our new in-app feature. The project objective is for 40% of users who log in 1X a week to use in-app video chat at least 2X a month by the end of the marketing campaign in late May.
Failure: Below 30%
3. Clarify your project timeline
In your project objective, you’ll likely include a date or time range in order for it to hit the “T” in SMART (Time-bound). However, your project timeline is more than just the project duration—your timeline might include key milestones or other important dates.
Project duration: March 15th-May 29th
March 15th: Kickoff meeting
April 5th: Product team delivers beta version of final video chat product
April 22nd: Initial design assets are in
May 7th: Design assets approved
May 17th: Product finalized & ready to ship
May 29th: Launch day
4. Spotlight your target audience
Knowing your target audience or persona is critical for project success. Your project team needs insight into relevant audience demographics in order to produce the best work possible—which, in our example, is app development for the target audience and a marketing campaign to amplify that launch.
Defining your target audience early can also prevent scope creep —which is when the scope of the project exceeds the initial project objectives or timeline. If you don’t have a clear sense of your target audience, you might end up having to re-work some of your project, which could lead to scope creep in the form of timing delays or budget constraints.
Target audience for this campaign is high school students between the ages of 15 and 18 looking to connect with their friends after school or on the weekend. Target demographic is tech-savvy, but they have very little patience for poor functionality, bugs, or lag.
5. Connect project stakeholders to other resources
Your project brief is nearly finished. Remember: this document is mainly for stakeholders and project team members to align on key details of the project. There may be relevant additional resources, like budget, communication plan, or project roles.
At the end of your project brief, make sure to link to any relevant documentation that your team might need to access. For example, if you’ve already created a project plan, include that at the end. Alternatively you could link to a RACI chart , project proposal , or project roadmap .
For more detailed information, check out our project plan or view our project roadmap .
Project brief example
Your project brief is more than just a few paragraphs with project information. Rather, a project brief is a way to communicate important details and dates to your broader project team. Make sure you package it up in an easy to use, central source of truth. Once you do, it might look something like this:
Where does a project brief fit in?
There are a lot of elements to project management, and if you’re a new project manager, you might be wondering what, if anything, you need to create. Here’s a short guide of each element, and where it fits in:
Project goals provide a high-level outline of how your project connects to business objectives.
Project objectives are the actual, specific deliverables at the end of a project.
A project roadmap is a high-level overview of your project deliverables, key milestones, and project goals. Project roadmaps are most helpful for complex initiatives.
A kickoff meeting is a meeting at the beginning of your project. Your kickoff meeting is a chance to connect with your project team and key stakeholders to gain buy-in.
Your project plan (sometimes called a project overview) is the information you need to actually start your project.
A project brief is your team’s central source of truth for key project information.
An executive summary is an overview of your project plan for executive-level stakeholders.
Project status reports are progress updates that you (the project manager) should send throughout the course of your project in order to keep your project team on track.
A project post-mortem is a chance to connect with your project team to look back on what worked, what didn’t, and what learnings you can bring to the next project.
In brief, get started with project briefs today
Project briefs are a great way to capture key information for your project and serve it up in an easy-to-access way for all of your project stakeholders. With a project brief, you have a way to give your stakeholders and project team an overview of the project, without overwhelming them.
The only thing that’s better than a great project brief? Managing your project in a work management tool so everyone knows exactly who’s doing what by when. Learn more about using a work management tool like Asana .
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Portland teachers strike clears brief hurdle: Avoids state mediator absence with Gov. Kotek involvement
Negotiations between Portland Public Schools officials and teachers hit a new snag Tuesday as the district’s first-ever teachers strike canceled a fourth day of school.
Officials with Portland Public Schools said the district and the Portland Association of Teachers were facing the prospect of a two-day pause in talks Wednesday and Thursday, due to the anticipated absence of a state mediator.
Despite the pouring rain, hundreds of people attended Portland Association of Teachers rally held at Roosevelt High School in Portland, Ore., Nov. 1, 2023.
Kristyna Wentz-Graff / OPB
District officials reached out to Gov. Tina Kotek for an interim facilitator to keep talks going. According to a statement sent by Kotek’s spokesperson Elisabeth Shepard late Tuesday, the governor’s office “successfully worked to secure a mediator to remain at the table with PAT and PPS.”
The governor’s office also affirmed the state CFO, Kate Nass, had been directed “to work with leadership at Portland Public Schools and the Portland Association of Teachers during ongoing mediation sessions.” The statement said she’d been asked to “review financial information at the center of this dispute to ensure the district and union are working from the same set of numbers.”
The teachers strike began last Wednesday and, after several bargaining sessions, the two sides reportedly remain far apart on key concerns regarding class size, working conditions and teacher compensation. Few signs of progress have emerged from those bargaining efforts.
As the strike has stretched out, political leaders called for the strike to end — and said the state will not bail them out .
State Sen. Elizabeth Steiner, D-Portland, said Monday she’d gotten calls and emails asking for the Legislature to swoop in, but she said there are no plans to provide an emergency funding package when lawmakers convene next week in Salem.
“I’m very frustrated,” Steiner said. “I’m not swooping.”
Portland area legislators, Kotek and the teachers union have asked Portland school board members to get more involved in contract negotiations, and some members have attended bargaining sessions.
A large, vocal crowd is expected to attend Tuesday’s board meeting , its first regular meeting since the strike began. Portland teachers plan to rally at 5 p.m. outside the district headquarters to apply pressure on the board.
Elsewhere in the region, parents, union leaders and school officials in Clark County have been watching and reflecting on their own recent labor stoppages.
Earlier this fall, Evergreen and Camas school districts endured contentious contract negotiations much like the standoff now in Portland. One of the big takeaways parents, teachers and district officials shared from that experience: They wish they’d found a way to avert those strikes.
“Nobody teaches you in superintendent school how to go through a strike,” said John Anzalone, who became Camas School District’s superintendent two years ago. “I think when you go through something like this, it’s important to help others, too.”
Rob Manning contributed to this story.
OPB’s First Look newsletter
As Portland teachers strike cancels its third day of classes, district, union, and legislators weigh in
Legislators and Portland school district officials held separate press conferences Monday to provide updates on negotiations between the school district and the union representing teachers.
Amid Portland teachers strike, SW Washington districts reflect on impacts of their own recent walkouts
Parents, union leaders and school officials in Clark County, Washington, said they are still learning how far-reaching the impact of the strikes will be.
Portland teachers strike continues; school canceled again Monday
Portland Public Schools and Portland Association of Teachers had not reached an agreement by 7 p.m. Sunday.
Portland teachers strike felt differently among city’s food service businesses
Portland Public Schools' first-ever teachers strike has the city's food service businesses making adjustments, and how close a restaurant or food cart is to a school can make a big difference.
State money isn’t coming to end Portland teachers strike, lawmakers say
Teachers and district officials alike have said the standoff — in its second day Thursday — could have been avoided if the Oregon Legislature had appropriately funded schools.
On the inaugural day of strike, Portland teachers, families and students rally on the picket line
The Portland Association of Teachers formally began their strike Wednesday morning. Signs carried messages such as: “Our children can’t wait!” “On strike for safe schools,” and “Class size matters.”
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Trump legal news brief: Ivanka Trump set to follow father, brothers on the witness stand in financial fraud trial
Yahoo news' succinct daily update on the criminal and civil cases against the 45th president of the united states..
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Ivanka Trump, the eldest daughter of former President Donald Trump , is expected to take the stand Wednesday in the $250 million financial fraud lawsuit that will decide the penalties Trump, his two eldest sons and their family business must pay after being found liable for years of overinflating the value of their assets. Federal prosecutors in Washington, meanwhile, refute Donald Trump’s bid to get the 2020 election interference case against him tossed.
New York financial fraud
Ivanka Trump set to testify Wednesday in New York financial fraud trial
Key players: Former Trump Organization executive vice president Ivanka Trump , Judge Arthur Engoron , Trump Org. executive vice presidents Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump , New York Attorney General Letitia James
After losing her appeal to postpone testifying in the financial fraud case underway in New York, Ivanka Trump is expected to take the stand on Wednesday.
Her testimony comes after her father and two eldest brothers all took the witness stand in the case and denied wrongdoing.
Initially, Ivanka Trump was a defendant in the case brought last year by James, but an appeals court dismissed the claims against her because they fell outside the statute of limitations.
“The allegations against defendant Ivanka Trump do not support any claims that accrued after [Feb.] 6, 2016,” the decision said . “Thus, all claims against her should have been dismissed as untimely.”
Since then, she has unsuccessfully tried to avoid testifying.
Why it matters: Trump and his eldest sons were subject to intense questioning from the state over their knowledge of and involvement in the preparation of financial statements that did not accurately reflect their assets. Ivanka Trump, who will also testify under oath, will likely face similar scrutiny. The penalties Engoron could impose in the case could threaten the future of the family's business empire in New York.
Jan. 6 election interference
Jack Smith urges judge to deny Trump motion to dismiss in election interference case
Key players: Justice Department special counsel Jack Smith , Judge Tanya Chutkan , Trump lawyers John Lauro and Todd Blanche
In a lengthy motion filed Monday, Smith challenged Trump’s October bid — filed by his lawyers Lauro and Blanche — to dismiss the charges against him, CNN reported .
Smith sought to rebuff Trump’s claims that his alleged efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election were political advocacy, borne out of genuine concern that the election had been stolen from him. Trump also claimed that his speech — specifically his false, widespread claims about election fraud that he allegedly used to pressure state and federal officials — is protected by the First Amendment.
Smith’s motion says Trump is trying to “rewrite the indictment, claiming that it charges him with wholly innocuous, perhaps even admirable conduct — sharing his opinions about election fraud and seeking election integrity — when in fact it clearly describes the defendant’s fraudulent use of knowingly false statements as weapons in furtherance of his criminal plans.”
Why it matters: Chutkan has yet to rule, but many legal experts have said that Trump’s First Amendment argument doesn't hold water. Trump’s bid to get the case thrown out is his latest attempt to convince a judge to dismiss criminal charges against him. The former president is facing 91 felony charges in four cases in Washington, Florida, New York and Georgia.
Bloomberg : Trump testimony called a 'broken record' by judge
CBS News : Trump mounts defense in Alabama campaign appearance
Monday, nov. 6.
Former President Donald Trump takes the witness stand in the $250 million financial fraud lawsuit brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James that will decide the penalties Trump, his two eldest sons and their family business must pay after being found liable for years of overinflating the value of their assets.
Trump takes the stand
Key players : Former President Donald Trump , Judge Arthur Engoron , Trump Org. executive vice presidents Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump , Trump Org. CFO Allen Weisselberg , New York Attorney General Letitia James , Trump lawyers Christopher Kise and Alina Habba , N.Y. AG lawyer Kevin Wallace
After being sworn in, Trump testifies that he doesn't think any real estate developer ever lowballed the value of his assets more than he has, USA Today reported . Engoron quickly issues a rebuke, telling Trump not to editorialize: “Mr. Kise, can you control your client? This is not a political rally, this is a courtroom,” Engoron says.
In another clash with Trump, Engoron vents: “In addition to the answers being nonresponsive, they're repetitive,” the Associated Press reported .
While Trump downplayed his own involvement in the preparation of financial statements James says were riddled with falsehoods, he did concede he had some role. “I would look at them, I would see them, and maybe on some occasions, I would have some suggestions,” he testified.
Why it matters : Engoron has already found the defendants liable for financial fraud, and the penalties he may impose based on Trump's testimony could threaten the future of the family's business empire in New York.
Engoron warns Kise that if he is unable to keep Trump on topic, he will excuse him from the stand and draw negative inferences.
Trump uses these clashes to attack the judge. “This is a very unfair trial. I hope the public is watching,” he says at one point.
Wallace asks Trump if he thinks Mar-a-Lago is worth $1.5 billion. “I think between a billion and a billion-five,” Trump says of his private club and residence in Florida.
At issue is whether Trump knowingly inflated the value of Mar-a-Lago, which, as a private club, could not fetch such a high price.
Pressed by Wallace on the wording on the Mar-a-Lago deed that states “the Club and Trump intend to forever extinguish their right to develop or use the Property for any purpose other than club use,” Trump responds, “'Intend' doesn't mean we will do it.”
Wallace presses Trump on the overvaluation of his Manhattan penthouse apartment in Trump Tower, the square footage of which was listed on Trump financial forms at triple the actual size. Trump concedes: “The number was too high. They lowered it after that.”
But Trump then adds of the corrected filing, “They took 10,000 feet per floor, and they went times three. But they didn't take out elevator shafts and different things.”
That comment drew a bemused response from Chase Peterson-Withorn, the Forbes reporter who interviewed Trump about his penthouse.
"And different things" includes an entirely separate penthouse belonging to someone else. And, by the way, Trump is making it sound like he wasn't aware, but he spent two hours personally telling me his apartment was 33,000 square feet and took up all of the top 3 floors... https://t.co/GBI4oqwdDY — Chase Peterson-Withorn (@ChaseWithorn) November 6, 2023
On the magazine that broke the story Trump had overstated the size of his penthouse apartment, Trump quips, “I have very little respect for Forbes.”
Why it matters : Trump acknowledged that the values of his properties had not been accurately portrayed on financial forms. His testimony was also marked by attacks on Engoron and for disregarding his instructions. Engoron will ultimately decide the penalties in the case.
During a lunch break Habba held a news conference where she sharply criticized Engoron, saying, "I was told to sit down today. I was yelled at, and I’ve had a judge who is unhinged slamming a table." She also went after James.
James returned fire in a post to X.
This morning, Donald Trump resorted to bullying and name calling, he gave rambling answers and hurled insults from the witness stand to distract from the truth. But make no mistake, he committed fraud. Numbers and facts don't lie. — NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) November 6, 2023
After more testimony about the terms of loan agreements with Deutsche Bank, and more Trump attacks on James and Engoron, Trump's time on the witness stand comes to an end. His own lawyers will not be cross-examining him.
At the conclusion of Trump's testimony, Habba tells Engoron that the defense will file a motion for a mistrial.
Why it matters : Trump's strategy in his testimony seemed to be to direct attention to what he contends is a political case against him. He repeatedly went after the judge, who will decide what damages the defendants must pay. But after Monday's testimony, Trump's lawyers' announcement that they will seek a mistrial means that they are not content to wait for Engoron's ultimate ruling before seeking relief.
Trump legal news brief: appeals court rejects ivanka trump’s 'undue hardship' argument, clearing way for her testimony.
A New York appeals court rules that Ivanka Trump must testify in the $250 million financial fraud trial of her father, eldest brothers and their family business.
Trump legal news brief: Chesebro pleads guilty to Georgia election interference charges in another blow to Trump
In another potential blow to former President Donald Trump, lawyer Kenneth Chesebro becomes the third defendant in the Georgia election interference case to plead guilty and agree to testify.
Trump legal news brief: Trump expected in court next week to watch Michael Cohen testify in New York fraud trial
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis offers another harsh rebuke of House Judiciary Committee chairman Jim Jordan, who has launched an investigation into her indictment of former President Donald Trump.
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Meta pressed to compensate war victims amid claims Facebook inflamed Tigray conflict
Meta is facing growing calls to set up a restitution fund for victims of the Tigray war, which Facebook is alleged to have fueled leading to over 600,000 deaths and the displacement of millions others across Ethiopia. Rights group Amnesty International, in a new report, has urged Meta to set up a fund, that will also benefit other victims of conflict around the world, amidst heightened fears that the social site’s presence in “high-risk and conflict-affected areas” could “fuel advocacy of hatred and incite violence against ethnic and religious minorities” in new regions. Amnesty International report outlines how “Meta contributed to human rights abuses in Ethiopia.”
Stock market news today: Stocks tread water with Fed's Powell on deck
Investors are on high alert for Chair Jerome Powell's comments after several hawkish Fed speakers put a check on spirits.
Meta will mark political and social ads altered by AI starting next year
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Samsung unveils ChatGPT alternative Samsung Gauss that can generate text, code and images
Just a few days after OpenAI's developer event, Samsung unveiled its own generative AI model, Samsung Gauss, at the Samsung AI Forum 2023. Samsung Gauss, developed by the tech giant’s research unit Samsung Research, consists of three tools: Samsung Gauss Language, Samsung Gauss Code and Samsung Gauss Image.
Vanguard slashes Ola valuation by 60%-plus; NB reduces Pharmeasy's by over 90%
The U.S. index fund pioneer Vanguard has cut the worth of its holding in the Indian ride-hailing startup Ola by nearly two thirds since original investment, and Neuberger Berman has slashed the worth of its Pharmeasy shares by more than 90%, according to an analysis of the funds' filings. Vanguard cut the worth of its shares in Ani Technologies, Ola’s holding firm, by 63.7% at August closure, it disclosed in its annual report. The asset manager marked down the holding of its Ola shares to $18.75 million, from the $51.7 million purchase price years ago, the filings showed.
Google has fixed a bug in Android 14 that locked Pixel users out of their devices
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Automaker group predicts keeping AM radio in EVs could cost $3.8 billion
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Robert Saleh defends Jets QB Zach Wilson, pleads 'the 5th' when asked why he doesn't bench him for Trevor Siemian
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Craig Counsell might be the hottest MLB free agent not named Shohei Ohtani. What makes the Brewers’ manager so special?
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