Managing the process
Much of the success of briefing will depend on the management of the process. With the pace of change, managing decisions so that they are made at the right time and by the right people is critical. Although identifying who plays what role is important, much of the activity happens through teamwork. But managing teams is complex. One of the problems with managing teams during briefing is that they are composed of individuals representing different organisations. They have different agendas and priorities. During a project, the make-up of the team can subtly change. For example, during its early stages the design team consists of senior managers from each firm and as the project progresses, more junior staff have a greater level of involvement (see Chapter 5). If that is not managed, there is a danger of ending up with a team with quite different perceptions and objectives to the client
Briefing involves managing risk. As individuals we tend to manage risk intuitively-for example, when crossing a busy road. However, when managing projects there are advantages in more explicit risk management. One of these advantages is that it throws up opportunity. By addressing the risk of whether or not to build, a better solution may become apparent. Risk management therefore should not be seen as a negative, it is a tool to help identify the critical issues to be addressed within the project.