Executive Ministers met in special session at Stormont today in an attempt to sort out policy priorities and a strategy for the autumn.
A week ahead of their first formal session, Ministers were gathering with officials and advisers to focus on the detail of their planned three-year programme for government.
With the number of crucial decisions piling up on Ministerial desks, concern has been growing over maintaining the momentum marked out by the Executive before its summer break.
But senior sources played down any sense of emergency about today's meeting, three days before the Assembly returns from the summer recess.
It came, nevertheless, amid fears the timetable for the comprehensive spending review and setting a Budget is beginning to slip.
First Minister Ian Paisley and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness are also due to meet Prime Minister Gordon Brown in another bid to improve the Government's financial package.
But so far no date is believed to have been fixed for the meeting, probably in London.