4 Tips for Project Closing Parties

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By Ramiro Rodrigues  

 

A great deal of effort is often put into a project kick-off meeting—so why isn’t that visibility just as important on the other end of the project?

 

What is a project closing party?

A project closing party is an event that intends to provide visibility and recognition to the main professionals involved in a completed project. Obviously, there is no sense in celebrating a project that got aborted or that didn’t reach its main goals and targets. So, we are talking about those projects that managed to get to end with the best combination of its intended results.

 

Within this proposal, it is reasonable to say that what will drive the size of the closing event will be the size (and budget) of the specific project, since it is necessary to achieve coherence between these variables.

 

What are the benefits?

I see two arguments for hosting these events at the end of a project—one strategic and one motivational.

 

On the strategic side, a closing party brings visibility to the executing organization (and, if applicable, the hiring organization) that the project has reached its predicted goals. It will help to reinforce to those at the strategic level of the organization that the team is capable and reliable.

 

From a motivational standpoint, these events will help recognize the efforts of the project team.

 

How should they be executed?

If you think a closing event could benefit your project efforts, here are some tips to abide by:

 

  1. Forecast the closing event in your project planning. It will allow you to make the proper arrangements of budget, time and resources.

 

  1. Manage expectations: Don’t hide the event, but also don’t overestimate what is forecasted in the plan.

 

  1. Honor the forecast: You can’t skimp on the event if it’s forecasted from the beginning—it will only leave a negative impression on the people involved.

 

  1. Gather people and acknowledge the merit: Just like in the kick off meeting, you should identify and invite the right stakeholders to witness the recognition of that specific team who performed great work.

 

Done well, events like a project closing party can have positive repercussions on your next projects.

 

Do you regularly host or attend closing events at the end of your projects? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

 

Posted by Ramiro Rodrigues on: April 17, 2019 01:07 PM | Permalink

Comments (13)

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Excellent idea to hold Project Closing party. I have never been at one. Partly that is my fault for not 'programming it in' as you rightly say. Often many Team members have moved on an a project just fizzles out. But why not bring everyone back to mark the end of the project. A great idea. Thank you for this article

We do hold closing gatherings but not parties. We make a lunch event, invite everyone, discuss things, thank people and so on. Good Points Ramiro

Wonderful article and great suggestions on project closing party. Definitely we should celebrate the project closure in effective manner to take advantage for future project.

Thank you !!

Our company does this for very large implementations or strategic customers. The company will do an in-house happy-hour or some sort of event for all employees to celebrate the completion and honor the project team who worked on it. I like the idea of doing this for all projects, even if on a micro scale. Definitely something to think about!

Interesting and very useful topic.Thanks for sharing it.
Yes. my company throw the party on the successfully closing the projects .
Mostly all employees are invited but not every time.

Good one

Great point. Celebrations are certainly had, but maybe not always formalized. Another consideration is the geographic challenges, so celebrations may need to be virtual.

It is also important to make more celebrations, or boosts, during the project, thus not limiting them at kick off and closure. For instance, upon achieving a major milestone or prior to tackle a paramount project activity.

Thanks for sharing, very interesting article

To everything there is a season... a time of celebration and recognition.
Thank you for these practical insights. Cheers!

Good topic. I wonder if reflections/retrospective/lessons learned should be part of this event or this event should focus on celebrations only :-)
I agree with Eduard that project celebrations are more effective from morale boosting perspective if done during achieving major milestones rather than waiting for the end of the project 

Never thought of a closing party as a way of creating more visibility for the project and for team members. Good point!

Agree particularly to motivate team

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