Communicate well

Communicating the right messages at the right times to the right people will contribute greatly to the success of a project and the achievement of value.

You should consider the following:

Develop a detailed communication plan

  • Set out your communication objectives as early as possible in a detailed communication plan based, ideally, on the strategy and plan you developed during the Concept stage (link to sample comms plan).
  • Review your previous plan to check that it remains relevant
  • Review external and internal factors to ensure that the political environment has not changed – if it has amend your plan.
  • Consider the use of social media to support the communication of your messages

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Hold regular team meetings and workshops

  • At the outset design team and cost meetings should be led by the client.
  • A well structured meeting plan throughout the project, with set agendas and good, concise minutes will facilitate good communication across the team.
  • Meetings should be well chaired to a set agenda and kept short and to the point.  Good, concise minutes should be circulated swiftly to participants to ensure that actions are executed.
  • Consideration should be given to establishing a web-based intranet for the project so that information can be easily communicated.
  • Workshops are a great way to make good use of the team for specific tasks within the project.  Techniques such as brainstorming, sand pitting, future state and wall sticking can be deployed to apply creative thinking to the subject in hand.  This allows a focus within the team and a generation of suggestions and proposals from all team members.
  • Workshops can be used by the client at an early stage to explore feasibility options, by the construction partner for design development or value engineering and by the site team for dealing with specific challenges with the supply chain.
  • External facilitators can be used, but best results are achieved when team members are directly involved to lead their own subject.

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Provide regular project team feedback

  • Consideration should be given to establishing a web-based intranet for the project so that information can be easily communicated.
  • Social media offers a new and interactive way of communicating information to the project team.
  • Newsletters are a popular way of communicating current issues both internally amongst project team members as well as externally to members of the public and other stakeholders.

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Involve supply chain and stakeholders in communication

  • For a project to be run on truly collaborative principles all communications should be extended to the whole supply chain and stakeholders – albeit “tailored” to suit the relevant group to avoid “irrelevant” communications which could very quickly become “spam”.
  • Set the communication “rules” out in your plan.

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