This research into the applicability of ―Promise Based Management‖ in the UK construction sector examines the business side of construction as to where and how client and customer interact. A research opportunity to attend meetings and conduct interviews with clients and contractors on a major construction project in the North West of England gave first hand access to the various issues involved and enabled the researchers to draw some conclusions as to how promises are both a key to success in a construction project and indeed an enabling factor in how things get done in construction. Our focus is ―speech act theory‖ or the ―language action perspective‖ and its analysis of the way social cohesion is produced. Meetings were attended which were concerned with the planning and implementation of a contract and interviews were conducted with members of the client, main contractor and subcontractor teams. The initial findings point towards the necessary resilience of the sector and how successful project managers deal with the contingencies that arise and even on occasion work them to the advantage of the project and, of course, the company.
Ethnography, Language action perspective, Philosophy, Project management, Promise-based management.