Project Construction Partnering

Once a decision has been made to partner on a construction project, Allan Lowe Construction Partnering & Project Scorecards™ typically does the following:

  • Conduct pre-session preparation research with partnering session participants, often including online surveys of key participants
  • Design a partnering program specifically for the project
  • Hold a Construction Partnering Session workshop
  • Conduct Project and Partnership Success follow-up, including:
    • a Partnership Evaluation Tool for the team to conduct partnering evaluations at a minimum of monthly project meetings
    • Project Scorecards™ for team members to evaluate status of Project and Partnership Success Goals and identify areas of concern. Includes provision of Project Scorecard™ Reports to senior management for the project
    • Conduct follow-up Construction Partnering Sessions as necessary, based on needs identified by the team in the Project Scorecards™
    • Conduct additional Construction Partnering Session workshops at key project stages, as required

Who attends the Construction Partnering Session workshops?

Ideally, Construction Partnering Session workshops should be attended by all project personnel with decision making authority and representatives from organizations which can directly impact the success of the project and partnership, including:

  • Owner representatives
  • Consulting engineer/architect/design firm representatives
  • Contractors
  • Key sub-contractors
  • Key suppliers
  • Major municipality representatives
  • Environmental officials
  • Safety officials

Are there different types of Construction Partnering Session workshops?

Depending upon the stage of the project and the needs of the team, there are several types of Construction Partnering Session workshops that can benefit the team and the project:

  • Two-Hour Self-Conducted Kick-Off Construction Partnering Session – a brief Self-Conducted Partnering Session often held in conjunction with the Project Start-Up Meeting. Generally takes approximately 2 hours to complete. This Partnering Session is appropriate when the project has scored at the lowest level of risk using the Construction Partnering Benefit Evaluation Tool.
  • If your project rates at the lowest level using the Construction Partnering Benefit Evaluation Tool, you may wish to download the Self-Conducted Partnering Kit.
  • One-day Project Kick-Off Construction Partnering Session Workshop – the most common workshop for complex projects, conducted before commencement or in the very early stages of a project.
  • Follow-up Construction Partnering Session Workshop – held throughout the life of a partnered project, often quarterly, semi-annually or at seasonal project kick-offs. Also on an as-needed basis as identified by the team in the Project Scorecards™.
  • Jump-start Construction Partnering Session Workshop – held for a project that is already underway, but experiencing difficulties that a Construction Partnering Session workshop can help to improve. Often preceded by an analytical Project Scorecard™ to help the team hone in on problem areas and focus the workshop on these problem areas,
  • Issue Resolution Construction Partnering Session Workshop – held to address specific issues that are plaguing a project,
  • Team Building Construction Partnering Workshop – held using True Colors™ Personality Assessment teambuilding processes to help team members understand each other and learn tools and techniques to improve communications and teambuilding with all key project team members. Used when the team is having trouble working as a team, or early in the project to help the team understand each other and maximize effective interactions and communications from the outset of the project.
  • “Lessons-Learned” Construction Partnering Session Workshop – held at the completion of a project to review the successes of partnering on the project, and identify potential improvements that will benefit future projects.

Are there other types of Partnering Session Workshops that benefit construction projects, programs or participants?

  • Industry-Wide Partnering Workshop – partnering between the Owner, Contractors, and Engineering / Architectural / Design Consultants to discuss issues, communications, and processes for the mutual benefit of all parties and the industry as a whole. These workshops are often held as part of an overall Partnering Program to communicate the status of the Partnering Program and gather inputs from all stakeholders for improvements to the Partnering Program moving forward. (See Construction Partnering Program Development section.)
  • Internal Partnering Workshop – focuses within individual organizations to address internal issues, concerns, and identification of roles within the organization itself, especially related to the organization’s Partnering Program or specific project partnering concerns. True Colors™ Personality Assessment teambuilding processes are often used in Internal Partnering Workshops to help team members understand each other and learn tools and techniques to improve communications and teambuilding.

What is a typical Construction Partnering Session workshop agenda?

All Construction Partnering Session Workshop agendas are designed specifically for each partnering session after consultations with the key stakeholders.

Executive Partnering Session Workshops are often held prior to Team Partnering Session Workshops to establish relationships at the executive level, and ensure the commitment of senior management to partnering.

Executive Partnering Session Workshops are especially valuable to the project when:

  • The organizations have not previously worked together on a project
  • The project is very complex with significant risks
  • There is the potential for major problems on the project
  • The schedule is long term
  • The project is politically sensitive
  • The project is in the public eye

See the Construction Partnering Benefit Evaluation Tool to see if your project may benefit from an Executive Partnering Session Workshop.

The objectives of Executive Partnering Session Workshops include:

  • To develop commitment at the senior level to establishing a partnering relationship and conduct the project in a partnering environment
  • To develop and use partnering tools and processes on the project
  • To convey the senior level commitment to partnering to the rest of the team members
  • To commit to monitoring the partnering on the project for the duration of the project and take actions as necessary to maintain partnering on the project

Typical Executive Partnering Session Workshop Agenda:

Opening Comments
Confirm Commitment to Partnering
Develop Project Vision
Develop Project & Partnership Success Goals
Discuss & understand Organizational Challenges/Concerns
Discuss Issue Resolution Process/Ladder
Discuss Communicating Partnering Commitment to Team

Typical Team Construction Partnering Session Workshop Agenda:

Opening Comments
Partnering Overview Presentation
Introductions of Team Members
Project Overview
Project & Partnership Success Goals
Organizational Lines of Authority & Reporting
Organizational Challenges/Concerns on Project
Team Communications Flow
Key Project Challenges / Project Risk Analysis
Structured Problem Solving
Presentation of Planned Strategies
Issue Resolution Process & Ladder
Team Communications Matrix
Monitoring Project & Partnership Success Goals
Celebrations of Successes
Partnering Champions
Lessons Learned from Prior Projects
Developing & Signing of the Partnering Charter

Download the Typical Construction Partnering Agenda Items PDF.

What is a Partnering Charter?

Sample Partnering Charter - City of Partnerville
Sample Partnering Charter
Click to enlarge

Allan Lowe Construction Partnering & Project Scorecards™ develops a Partnering Charter for every project that undertakes a Construction Partnering Session. On projects where additional Partnering Sessions are held, the Partnering Charter is updated.

A Partnering Charter is a document that includes a group photograph of the Construction Partnering Session participants, the Project and Partnership Success Goals, and generally a copy of the agreed upon Issue Resolution Ladder developed and agreed upon by the team at the Partnering Session. The Partnering Charter serves as a symbol and a reminder of the commitments made by the team members and is often located in participants’ offices and in field offices for reference during project meetings. The Partnering Charter is often used as a resource and benchmark for team members’ decision making, similar to an organization’s Vision and Mission statements.

Allan Lowe Construction Partnering & Project Scorecards™ provides hard copies of the Partnering Charter to all Partnering Session participants.

Comments from participants at Allan Lowe Construction Partnering Sessions…

  • “All projects should start off with one of these sessions!”
  • “I hope the project goes as well as the partnering workshop went – thanks!”
  • “That was the best partnering workshop I’ve attended – and I’ve attended many!”
  • “Excellent organization of discussion – we got issues that were bothering people on the table.”
  • “I’d like to see more of these prior to any major project commencing.”
  • “Great session. I had worried it wouldn’t be so pertinent to the specific project.”
  • “This was a concise and streamlined session – an efficient management of time. Thanks!”

Download our Construction Partnering Brochure.


Allan Lowe’s Partnering Session framework was very well put together and I really appreciate how I benefited from this Partnering Session.

Justin Lessard
Project Manager
Innovative Civil
Constructors Inc.