In this lesson, we'll discuss how a project manager organizes and conducts a project kick off meeting. It's important at the beginning of a project to make sure everyone has the same foundational knowledge. And one method to accomplish this is with a:
The project kick off meeting can occur any time after a project team has been assembled. Sometimes this meeting occurs as early as Phase 1, the project scoping phase. But it can also occur as late as Phase 3, when management of the actual project begins. Each organization might do this differently.
No matter when it is held, the goal of the kickoff meeting should have the following components:
Each project has a specific review process such as how decisions are made, how documentation is created and stored, and methods used to report on progress, schedule, or risks.
Team members should be expected to collaborate on the creation of project deliverables, as well as identifying issues and solutions.
All team members must report on their time, effort, and percent complete for their assigned tasks.
When team members need to spend more effort than estimated on a task, they should know how the project manager expects to be notified, and the process involved to receive approval for the extra effort.
One aspect that should not be forgotten about the kickoff meeting is the opportunity for team building. Clear communication is always the key to team motivation, so the project manager should be prepared for the meeting, and ready to answer any questions from the team.
Team building exercises might be used during the kick off meeting. To help orient team members about the responsibility of team leaders, role playing activities could demonstrate how issues might be handled.
A team member might portray concern about the estimate for a deliverable. Members could then walk through the process to address this issue with their team lead, the project manager, and other members of the team.
The project manager should also note those members with specific areas of expertise, and how they might assist others. As always, the team should understand that open lines of communication and the free flow of information are expected.
In this lesson, you learned the goal of a project kick off meeting, what key components are part of any kick off meeting, and how the meeting might be used for team building. Effective reporting methods and expectations establish the process for communicating to the project manager when tasks get off track.
Source: this work is adapted from sophia author jeff carroll.
A meeting to acquaint team members with one another, inform team members about the project and project plan and establish overall accountabilities.