During the 2011 election, under Michael Ignatieff, and in the 2008 election under Stephane Dion, the Liberals looked more like a group of fractious remnants of a by-gone glorious age than a real political party. Dion the once golden boy of the tall red Quebec poppy and Ignatieff the intellectual interlocutor. Neither of these candidates ever really appeared to have a solid team backing them up. Perhaps they forgot as Harper himself is seldom seen as the leader of a team.
But, Harper's rise to power was as much about the collapse of the Liberals and the rise of the NDP as was anything to do with the Conservatives. In many ways it was the normal swing of the pendulum along with the typical scandals arising from a decade of unbroken power.
But, Trudeau needs a team. He especially needs an economic team. Chantal Hebert's recent article is correct that he could use an economic star, but he can at least cultivate a strong, consistent set of economic talking points and get Ralph Goodale, John McCallum and Scott Brison and others to repeat them at every opportunity.
These kind of sound bites have to be backed up by something more detailed, but the message itself has to be quite simple.
With his lack of experience, he needs to trot out his most experienced MP's and showcase their experience as much as possible. He won't win on a person to person fight-out between himself and Harper.