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Execute: Set & meet expectations

Setting and meeting expectations is key to successful project execution.

Now that you have selected your consultant, set the project up for successful execution by documenting the project deliverables in a Statement of Work (SOW), onboarding the consultant, and integrating them into your team.

Statement of work

The Statement of Work is a high level, living document of deliverables. It’s common for needs to shift so keep the SOW up to date along the way. This will minimize future misunderstandings on priorities and deliverables.


The project kickoff meeting is one of the most valuable steps in the SPEED process. The purpose of this meeting is to establish a shared and trusted working relationship between you and the consultant from day one. The meeting will also serve to identify metrics and communicate clear expectations to set both parties up for success.

Week 1 – Project Kickoff

  • Ensure access to people and resources.
  • Make introductions to key players the consultant will work with.
  • Determine rhythm of communication.
  • Decide preferred schedule, location, etc.

Week 2 – Engagement and Access

  • Set recurring meetings with your consultant.
  • Confirm network and tool access.

Week 3 – Fine Tuning

  • Discuss current status of deliverables and potential obstacles.

Week 4 – Progress to Date

  • Ensure you are working in unison with the consultant.
  • Get ahead of the small issues and re-evaluate priorities as needed.

Reflection questions

Ask yourself:

  • Do I have a SOW drafted with all the details of deliverables, the timeline, and payment terms?
  • Have I communicated to my team the reason I am bringing in an expert and established an environment of inclusion and trust?
  • Have I set expectations appropriately with the consultant about our culture and the work?
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