BEP 244 – Debriefing a Project (Part 2)

English for Project Management

In this Business English Pod lesson, we look at discussing the outcome of a project.

When you, your team, or your company finish a project, what do you do? Do you rush into the next project and put the last one behind you? Or do you take the time to talk about what you’ve done and try to learn from your mistakes? Let’s think about this another way: do you find that certain problems keep coming up in one project after another? Well, they don’t have to. Not if you take the time to learn, to discuss, and to debrief.

Yes, it’s important to discuss the projects we’ve completed. And in these types of discussions native speakers will use many common and useful expressions. Sometimes we call these useful expressions “collocations.” That’s a fancy way to talk about a natural combination of words. Just think about an expression like “to launch a new product.” We don’t say “start” a new product, or “let out” a new product. The natural collocation is “launch a new product.” As you listen to the dialog, try to pick out some of these expressions and we’ll go through them later in our own debrief.

In the dialog, we’re going to rejoin Dean and Michelle, whose company has just finished a project to expand a manufacturing plant. In our last lesson, they talked about some of the successes and delays in the project. Today, we’ll hear them talk about how to resolve some of the problems they experienced.

Listening Questions

1. What is Dean’s main concern about the problem with City Steel?
2. What was another contributing factor in project delays?
3. What does Dean suggest to Michelle about how to do things better?

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