The project manager knew that communication was key to the success of any project. Therefore, an effective communication infrastructure was quickly established and sustained throughout the project. A number of actions were performed to establish the infrastructure.
The first was to design and deploy a web site. This site was used to profile all activities of the project from planning to execution. It also contained procedures on managing the project and relevant templates and guidelines on the new and proposed policies and procedures infrastructure. The site was constantly updated to ensure that everyone had the latest information.
The next action was to set up a series of ongoing meetings for the project team. A procedure was prepared and published on the web site. The document provided details for the meetings, e.g., purpose, location, attendees, schedule. At the meeting, the project manager documented and distributed results among team members .
A set of reports was also developed for all the stakeholders. However, a careful audience analysis was done to ensure that the category of stakeholders received the appropriate information to help them succeed. For example, the project manager met with different categories of stakeholders to determine their reporting needs and then tailored reports to meet their requirements. The goals were to provide meaningful information and to avoid confusion and frustration. All reports , of course, were posted to the web site.
Throughout the project, the project manager was responsive , not reactive, when communicating. Concerted actions were taken to ensure that communication was ongoing, especially when difficult issues arose. An issues management process was deployed that addressed concerns and problems not captured in the work breakdown structure. These issues were discussed during meetings to ensure that an ongoing dialog occurred on their resolution and provided visibility to them.
The project manager did not restrict himself to one method of communication. In addition to meetings and the web site, the use of e-mails to communicate issues relevant to stakeholders was encouraged. He avoided, however, the all too frequent shotgun approach to e- mails and carefully constructed distribution lists for e-mails covering certain issues.