New projects can occasionally get off to a rocky start because we jump right in it without having to know the customer or properly knowing some of the implicit, latent, and informal criteria that may not have been documented, but without that we do not fully comprehend what must be done to succeed.
The project kick-off meeting establishes mutual and shared objectives and the aim of the activity, whether it’s external or internal.
What is a Project Kick-Off Meeting? #
Project kick-off meeting is the initial gathering or the very first meeting of the project team, with or without the clients, prior to initiating project execution. Project kick off meeting is in the initiation phase of project life cycle.
During the kick-off meeting, the team responsible for the project’s delivery is able to obtain relevant data they need to succeed and illustrate their optimism and progress of the concept, and it’s a chance for the client to have faith in the project team they’ve decided to work with. Your client’s faith in the team’s capacity to complete the work is inspired when they see that the members have an in-depth understanding of both the objectives and the measures necessary to get there.
The Purpose of Project Kick-Off Meeting #
Project kick-off meetings serve several purposes, such as:
- Getting the project up and running and assuring clarity.
- Introduce client and project teams’ roles and responsibilities.
- Ensure everyone knows the project background.
- Ensure everyone agrees on project success.
- Make sure everyone understands teamwork and work effectively.
The Objectives of Project Kick-Off Meeting #
Again, kick-off meeting goals depend on your project. As the project manager, there are a few key objectives you will want to achieve. These could be the examples for project kick-off meeting’s objectives:
- Defining the project’s objectives and purpose, as well as reaching a consensus on those.
- During the entirety of the project, setting the tone for open communication and effective teamwork.
- Have a mutual recognition and transparency regarding the project outline
- Determine who will be responsible for what on the team.
- Determine the timetable for the project, its deliverables, and the format and frequency of status updates.
The objective, common goals, timetable, deliverables, and format and frequency of status updates may change and evolve all through the project, however kick-off meetings might help provide a starting point that make it easier for the team to work with.
In addition, it is essential to dive into the specifics of the project. Discuss the project’s approach, technique, project scope, and any other pertinent details. This can be used by project managers to validate their first project plan and compare the content to the Project Charter or Statement of Work (SoW).
Planning Project Kick-Off Meeting #
There is no situation that is more uncomfortable than walking into a meeting with a person who hasn’t put in the effort to prepare for it. Ensure that you don’t lose face by preparing your project’s kick-off meeting carefully.
You must communicate contextual information in advance, using a shared document, and actively include the team and anybody else whose work may be impacted by the project.
Compile a list of questions you’d like to ask your team as part of the meeting’s agenda in order to keep it focused and productive. It is recommended to email them these questions in advance of the event so they can prepare their responses. In addition, as the project manager, you must prepare answers to questions you anticipate your team will ask.
How To Perform Kick-Off Meeting for Your Project? #
1. Setting up the meeting agenda #
The manner in which you organize the meeting agenda is determined by the project; nevertheless, the 5 W’s, also known as who, what, where, when, and why, should be included as crucial components:
- What is the project’s backstory?
- Why do you do this project? What is the purpose of this project?
- What exactly is the scope of the project?
- What exactly is the plan of action?
- Who is doing what and when?
- How do you plan to collaborate with one another?
- How can you recognize your project as a successful one?
2. Invite team members #
To invite project team members to a kick-off meeting, call, email, or text them. You decide how your team will communicate. Add some appealing lines to enhance your team’s energy so they look forward to the kick-off meeting and share their best project plan ideas with you.
3. Set mission and vision statement for project #
Everyone requires a clear motivation to work on and a concise, concise, motivating mission statement they can read daily to recall their project goals. The project team and stakeholders need a mission statement. Ask the project stakeholder about their project’s mission statement if they have.
4. Clear all the confusion #
A kick-off meeting should include an ongoing dialogue with the team and project stakeholder (client) in order to avoid future misunderstandings and build a lasting business connection. So, during the meeting, you need to encourage respecting the recommendations made by the other people in order to build a strong link with the other people and the best project plan.
5. Create detailed project planning #
A kick-off meeting to start a project should also include making a detailed project planning. The plan is a key part of finishing the project because it shows you and your team how to get where you want to go. Therefore, you and your partner should create a plan outlining the steps you will take to complete the job.
All members of the team should have a collective to-do list, but having a list for each person is also beneficial. You can ask your coworkers for assistance in developing Gantt charts for both the team and the individual in order to ensure timely completion of tasks and to log any issues both you and your team encounter.
When you list all the tasks of the project planning, you can visualize them using FoxPlan and check for project critical paths if any. This will help you and your team to have more clarity of the project and if each task has any dependencies.
6. Allocate the roles of your project team #
When you have diverse members of the project team with different skill sets and knowledge, so you should assign each person tasks based on his or her own skill set.
To ensure effective teamwork and consistency in the performance of each assignment, you should communicate an effective role assignment among your team members and manage the resource accordingly. FoxPlan makes it easy for you to add your team members in the project workspace and assign their role with Resource Management feature.
7. Establish a system for project monitoring #
You should establish a mechanism to monitor your project progress. Not only will the Gantt Chart assist in completing the tasks, but it will also represent the weekly frequency of specific task completion.
You can use FoxPlan for monitoring your project as it enables you to get a 360-degree perspective of your projects by grouping them at the portfolio level. The dashboard for the FoxPlan project may be easily and quickly changed without any trouble.
8. Develop risk management plan #
Do not forget to identify the project’s risks and establish contingency measures prior to their occurrence. This phase should remain a top priority on your list of kick-off meetings if you are operating on an industrial project. Form an experienced and certified risk management team to focus on the assessment and management of risks before encountering significant difficulties.
9. Documentation for kick-off meeting #
When planning a kick-off meeting for a project and following a series of steps to ensure its success, keep a record and make a documentation of each step performed during the kick-off meeting so that you can refer back to it when necessary.
Multiple key roles are played by the kick-off meeting in the successful completion of projects, including the development of a strong bond, a greater understanding, the consolidation of all efforts, and the creation of strategies that ensure the project’s success.
If you are eager to get started on your own project kick-off meeting but aren’t entirely sure where to begin, using project management software like FoxPlan can help you streamline the initiation phase of project life cycle and keeping track of every task in one platform. Try FoxPlan for FREE today or contact our team and experience FoxPlan in action!