This paper attempts to progress the development of a more relevant IS research tradition. It describes an application of Benbassat & Zmud’s (1999) recommendations for conducting relevant research to explain how top managers influence IT projects to succeed. The findings challenged the main emphasis of the common IT prescriptions and explained why the success rates of IT projects has been so inconsistent. The research provides a example of how to overcome the fragmentation in the field and if it achieves its goal of influencing management and IT audiences, it will serve as an exemplar of relevant research. It is notable for its use of the pragmatic paradigm and collaboration leading its publication by Standards Australia.