John Chapman’s fourth blog post offers an analogy for the process of the kick-off announcement. How do people in your organization perceive your projects? Do they see themselves as passengers in an airplane – essentially passive and to be waited on hand and foot by the cabin crew while the captain gets them to their destination? How do you communicate the relationship between deliverers and stakeholders and the culture you want to establish on your projects?



Ladies and Gentlemen, the Programme Board has given authority for the Project to proceed. We were waiting for contractual agreement to be reached with the key suppliers. This has been completed.

Commencing the project

Project initiation is commencing. You have been invited to join the project. It is important you understand your role and objectives. These will be given to you and we recommend you read them. If you haven’t already done so, make yourself aware of the project plan and time-table, in particular the critical path activities, and those with your name allocated as the resource.

In the event risks arise

The project is expected to run smoothly. However should risks arise, the risk management procedure is:

  1. First identify the nature of the risk
  2. Next define the impact in terms of scope, timeline and probability
  3. Then notify the project manager who will respond appropriately.

Comfort and Motivation

The project manager and the team manager will take time to get to know you. They are there for your comfort and motivation. Whilst the project is in flight they will be providing drinks, food and words of encouragement to maintain productivity. Please email them to advise of any dietary requirements.


There may be changes to the business case which will affect the final destination. Should any dis-benefits be identified, do not panic. Additional resources will be provided, and motivation should return to normal.

Those not wanted

Finally should you come across any naysayers, doomsayers, sceptics, doubters and disdainers it is important you raise an exception report. These individuals are not welcome and will be removed from the organisation.

In summary

While we wait for the first activities to commence, please take a moment to check the risk management procedure and advise the project manager of any personal issues you have.

John Chapman, MIoD, MAPM, FISM, BSc (Hons)
Programme Director, TouchstoneFMS Ltd

Read John’s first post – Are Project Managers Anarchists and Punk Rockers in disguise?

Read John’s second post – The Chief Provocation Officer

Read John’s third post – Fight Director or Peacemaker?

Read John’s final post – The Head of the Disciplinary Committtee

About TouchstoneFMS

Touchstone FMS Ltd is a leading business systems and IT consultancy specialising in the delivery of Financial ERP, Business Intelligence and Procurement software solutions; ongoing support and managed services, on premise and in the cloud. Based in London, with customers all over the UK and Channel Islands, we work with leading software authors to ensure our customers have the best solutions for their business. Our emphasis is on building partnerships, supporting customers through their digital transformation journey and long into the future.