So, as my project sponsor….

Project Manager (PM): Can I just check, are you the project sponsor for this project?

Project Sponsor (PS): Yes, I thought you knew that

PM: Well, I thought it was the case however, no one has formally told me. I am putting together various documents for this project and it is obvious that this will take me quite a while. I want to talk with you, the sponsor about the overall project governance process.

PS: Project governance. What do you mean exactly by this?

PM: Sorry, it’s project management jargon that gets in the way. Well, we need to define the boundaries. What decisions can I make, not make? Budget issues; what is my spend limit and who can amend the project on such issues as budget? I guess you could sum up governance as:

“defining accountabilities and responsibilities for decision-making at a strategic level or project level.”

PS: But you are experienced and have a lot of knowledge and skill. You do not need me to sort this type of thing out.

PM: I understand that, however you have said this is a high risk project. Without some overall project governance – you being involved then the risk profile gets worse! How are you going to assess that the project is going in the right direction? How will I ensure that I get the right resources? What sort of reporting is appropriate for this project; to you, to other senior managers? All of this needs to be sorted out now so I can build your requirements into my schedule.

I do have a suggestion.

PS: What’s that?

PM: Why don’t we grab a couple of hours say early next week when we can go through the requirements from both sides? We can develop our own check sheet. I am sure it will not take us too long. How does that sound?

PS: Like I’m fixed up! Must admit, I did not think we would need to do this.

PM: You can see why we do need to sort out governance arrangements can’t you?

PS: I guess so. It’s just I have never done it before if I’m honest.

PM: That is why we are having this conversation! Shall we say Monday at 10 am? I’ll get the coffees!

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