When you are dealing with a failing project or a high risk program, first order of business is to simplify the complexity and to remove the ambiguity.
This can be done by using 5Ws and one H - This is a basic information gathering tool is often underutilized. A toast to my engineering days, I have found this to be a great way to begin. I have used it across all organization levels and project teams and it has served me well.
Here is my cheat sheet: