briefed on exactly how their division would interface and use the forthcoming accounting software.

Case Study.

The Accounting Software Installation Project.

Sitting in her office, Karin Chung is reviewing the past four months of the large corporate accounting software installation project she has been managing. Everything seemed so well planned before the project started. Each company division had a task force that provided input into the proposed installation along with potential problems. All the different divisions had been trained and briefed on exactly how their division would interface and use the forthcoming accounting software. All six contractors, which included one of the Big Four consulting companies, assisted in developing the work breakdown structure—costs, specifications, time.

Karen hired a consultant to conduct a one-day “partnering” workshop attended by the major accounting heads, a member of each task force group and key representatives from each of the contractors. During the workshop several different team-building exercises were used to illustrate the importance of collaboration and effective communication. Everyone laughed when Karen fell in to an imaginary acid-pit during a human bridge-building exercise. The workshop ended on an upbeat note with everyone signing a partnering charter that expressed their commitment to working together as partners to complete the project.