L&D: Kick-Offs Are Critical in All Projects of Consequence

The Most Critical Kick-Off in My ISD and PI Methodologies Is With the PST

ISD is Instructional Systems Design — PI is Performance Improvement — PST is a Project Steering Team.

The PST reviews and approves/amends the Project Plan and provides all of the Resources that the project requires.


How one runs that Kick-Off meeting – reviewing the plan, fielding questions and gaining buy-in and commitment to the scheduled tasks, the burden on key players, means everything to the success of the effort.

I do formal Kick-Off at the end of the first Phase in CAD, MCD and IAD efforts and in my ADDIE-like MCD/IAD efforts – at the start of Phases 4 and 5 as well. I always Kick-Off the Project with each new Team as they come on-board for the effort.

I explain what went on in Phase 1 and what has been happening since the need for the project effort was determined. And I use it to paint the picture of the way forward – in each project.


CAD Phase 1 – where the Project Plan is built and sold for a Curriculum Architecture Design effort – for the construct of a T&D Path and Planning Guide.

The PST either buys that plan – or modifies it. And then agrees to support the effort by making sure that the right people are  involved – by handpicking those people and committing them to the effort.

That responsibility should help you decide who to include on the PST – because you’re going to need their people.


It’s the same in MCD for Phase 1. But additionally – if/when you bring on a team of Developers – to work in parallel to speed the Phase 4 effort – see the next graphic – you’ll need to do a thorough walk-through of the design and assignments.


And the same at the beginning of the Pilot Test efforts. Everyone needs to be oriented to their roles and responsibilities.

Video: Development Kick-Off in MCD

Here is one of 50+ Videos covering aspects of my PACT Processes for T&D.

See the other videos in The School of PACT – here.

Phase 1 – The GRM Is All Important

Again, I Kick-Off a Project with a Project Steering Team F2F if at all possible. Not always possible – which means the interactions, engagement prior, is even more critical.

I call it a GRM – Gate Review Meeting.

And of course what you do and how you do it depends on many variables, how well you personally know everyone, how well they all get along, etc.

It’s a business meeting. Filled with all the intrigue, political power plays, etc., as all of your other meetings I would guess. There is either that kind of drama going on in the background or up-front, or there is not. Deal with it if there is.


This is always key. The first GRM. It sets the stage for the project and perhaps more.

And there should never be surprises from you – to the attendees – as you should have engaged them and provided enough background so that they come with some with their serious questions, names and locations to nominate, etc. and don’t get blind-sided.

This is where you or someone – in the first GRM – facilitates the team in charge to review objectives, obstacles, plans, people and other resources necessary to the Plan.

Which is always critical.

So do it well!

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