• Nicole Papaioannou Lugara

My Favorite Questions to Ask During a Project Kick Off



I've done... ok, I honestly can't remember how many any more... but a lot of kick off meetings with different kinds of clients from all different industries. During these meetings, I try to get all the key players together, including stakeholders, SMEs, individuals who represent the target learners, and occasionally supervisors. We dive into what will make great training (or whatever solution we decide is needed).


While the specific details of our conversation are all unique, there are some questions I ask no matter who I'm working with.


These are my favorites.


Questions to Ask Stakeholders


  • What is your organization's primary goal for the next year (could be quarter), beyond just this training?


  • Why do you think this training is needed?


  • What are people doing now and what do you want them to be doing instead?


  • What's at risk if this training fails?


Questions to Ask SMEs


  • How do you like to communicate?


  • What would it look like if everyone successfully learned this stuff?


  • What are the most critical concepts for any who wants to do this stuff?


  • What would this look like in an ideal world?


  • What is most challenging for people to grasp about this?


  • Are there any grey areas?


  • What are the most common scenarios in which this information is used on the job?


  • Have you ever experienced great training on this subject matter? If so, why was it so successful?



Questions to Ask Learner Representatives


  • Do you feel that you need to learn how to do this thing?


  • What is your confidence level with this thing?


  • What have you found confusing, if anything?


  • Are there any ways in which the training doesn't meet up to the on-the-job environment?


These questions help me narrow down what's important to the organization and how to make it applicable to the real work that's being done. They're focused around behavior change and purpose, rather than content.


What are your favorites?


đź“Ś Post them in the comments.




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