28 March 2022

Ministerial visits and your business

Building relationships between your business and relevant government departments, or constituency MPs, can be a valuable part of a business or organisation’s communications strategy. A strong public affairs strategy can be a powerful way to showcase your work and have your say on policy matters that impact your business and sector. It’s also a good opportunity to connect with, inform, and engage ministers who are responsible for policy-making.

Here are a few valuable pointers to consider as part of your communications strategy when planning a ministerial visit to your organisation.

Aims and objectives of a visit

Prepare and prepare some more. What do you hope to gain from a visit? Get clear on the key objectives. It could simply be building a positive relationship with a constituency MP, or maybe talking and sharing information about a specific section of your business in relation to a policy. Always bear in mind the hectic schedule that government ministers have, and that any time spent with your organisation should be planned and directed well to maximise the time and benefits, and moreover, make them more likely to accept your invitation.

Keep time a priority

Time constraints will always be a factor, so make sure that you work to the time that has been allocated. Liaise closely with the Minister’s office or aides, and ensure everyone has the correct contact and directions to your location. Consider how you will work around any curveballs thrown. For example, the Minister could be delayed in traffic and your visit time might be been cut short if they have a follow-on engagement. What would be the minimum key objectives you could achieve in such an altered time frame?

How will it look?

What do you want the visit time to look like? Who will be present for the meet-and-greet? What kind of experience would you like the Minister to have whilst visiting your business space? Will a full briefing be required, or just a simple overview of what the Minister should expect?

Don’t assume the Minister will have read any briefing prior to arrival either – a quick overview of what they should expect on arrival is always helpful.

Plan a programme accordingly for the time allocated, and ensure your key objectives can be met in an interesting and creative way – no death-by-Powerpoint presentations, please! Consider an interactive experience for the Minister and make it memorable. 


If there’s to be any press follow-up or other communications on the visit (blog, social media etc) include any photography and quote-gathering into the schedule, as this can take time to achieve the right photos and information. Brief the photographer (if external) ahead of the visit. What kind of photos and style are you aiming for? Make sure any relevant staff are present and they also have a briefing.

These are some of the basics you’ll need to consider if you’re planning on having a Ministerial visit to your business or organisation. Proper research and planning are essential during this process, as is good communication between all parties involved.

If you’re looking to get expert help and guidance on public affairs and how to build positive relationships between your business and the government, contact us today via our website or call 0845 625 0820.

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