NEC4 and the importance of avoiding a fait accompli
Cooky blew my stash
When I was a young tearaway, long before I saw the light of Chartered Accountancy, I used to meet up with a group of friends on a Friday night to play cards before heading off for some serious beer consumption.
These card sessions could make or break your evening. A bad run of luck could mean heading home early with that evening’s drinking money lost. This happened on many occasions to one particular friend who had the unfortunate habit of turning red in the face when he had a good hand. As soon as we saw him changing hue we would all throw in our cards leaving him unable to exploit his advantage.
On one occasion, I made the serious error of allowing a mate to play my hand whilst I went to the toilet. When I returned to the table shortly afterwards, not only had my existing pile of cash been lost, but I was also in significant debt to the other players. My mate Cooky had blown the lot.
It was a fait accompli: A thing that has already happened or been decided before those affected hear about it, leaving them with no option but to accept it. I went home sober and broke.
NEC4 and Early Warning Notices
A true mark of collaboration is when the parties to the Contract work together to manage and mitigate risk. NEC 4 has sought to emphasise the importance of avoiding a fait accompli and enhancing collaboration by changing the language of risk.
It includes measures such as:
- The Project Manager preparing a first early warning register within one week of the starting date.
- Regular early warning meetings being held starting within two weeks of the starting date.
NEC 4 changes the word risk to early warning. It also includes further measures which are intended to improve the management of risks such as:
- Greater discussion of previously agreed actions to ensure they are still appropriate
- The inclusion of sub-contractors in meetings to assist in decision making
This emphasis is a good idea.
My experience of losing all my drinking money without any opportunity to understand or influence the gambling left me feeling less than collaborative towards Cooky