How to run an internal project kickoff meeting
Updated: Dec 30, 2018
In my years of experience as a Project Manager, internal kickoff meetings are either often been neglected, or it may be a challenge to invite the pre-sales team into such meeting due to many different reasons. However, having a well planned internal project kickoff meeting could avoid many downstream issues that may occur later in the project. It would also avoid unnecessary frustration by the client for replying what has already been discussed with the pre-sales team. There are 2 main objectives of the internal kickoff meeting:
For the project team to officially take over information relating to the project from the pre-sales team,
To strategise and prepare the project team for a successful project kickoff with client
Project Manager, Consultant, Sales, Pre-sales, Customer Service manager (if any), Practice Manager (Optional), Delivery Manager (Optional)
The project team resources has been assigned and formed up prior to internal kickoff
Sample Internal Project Kickoff Agenda
1. What is the background about the client?
About the company
What are the business challenges? (Eg. IT cost is too high, business is constantly changing)
What are the IT change drives? (E.g. High operations cost, need to keep up with business demand)
Desired IT outcomes from the project? (E.g. Able to deliver IT services upon business request within a day)
Client's stakeholder contact list/roles (E.g. Executive Sponsor, Project Manager, Subject Matter Expert, Ops lead)
Any other vendors involving in the project?
2. What is the background about the project?
Confirm project Scope of Work (E.g. Inclusion/exclusion scope, Assumptions on SOW, geographical location, deliverables)
Customer's present state of environment readiness/constraints
Customer's expectation of project, timeline for completion
Project success criteria
Possible project risk
Future project phases after this project?
3. Go through any materials produced/presented to the customer by the sales team during pre-sales stage
Any Other Business
Prepare a list of action items and make sure everyone knows what's next for them
Discuss about possible dates base on the team's availability to propose to client for official project kickoff
"What do you think?"
Every project manager starts their projects differently. Let me know if you think there are any other useful details I have missed in the above agenda. Do share with me as well, how do you start your projects.