A stakeholder is a person, group, or organisation who is affected by the project’s outcome. They have a vested interest in the project’s success and can be from within or outside the sponsoring organisation. Stakeholders can influence the project in either a positive or negative way.
A large number of people are involved in bringing a project from conception to completion. You’ll need to know how to manage each and every one of them, including those who don’t report to you directly.
How to Make a Stakeholder Management Plan?
Follow these five steps to ensure that your stakeholder management plan covers all of your bases.
1. List Your Stakeholders
Knowing your stakeholders is the first step in any good stakeholder management strategy.
2. Prioritize Your Stakeholders
Take note of which stakeholders will have the most influence on the project and when their influence will diminish or increase.
3. Interview Your Stakeholders
Working with new stakeholders can be challenging at first; some are easier to deal with than others. Depending on the project, there will be multiple voices from outside the company, each with their own personality and demands, or multiple voices from within the company, each with competing goals. To help you sort things out, here are some sample stakeholder interview questions to ask:
- What makes you want to work on this project?
- What do you hope to get out of this project?
- What do you expect from your team if you have one?
- Which deliverables pique your interest the most?
- What motivated you to participate in this project?
- What do you hope to see happen with this project after it launches?
- How quickly do you think this project will be completed?
- Why do you think this project is a good idea?
- Why are you concerned about this project?
- Do you prefer face-to-face meetings, phone calls, or emails?
4. Develop Your Matrix
A quick mock-up of a quadrant to sort your findings will make it easier to distinguish between those with high interest and high priority versus those with low interest and low priority. It will also aid in the sorting of all those in the middle.
5. Set & Manage Expectations
Clearly define which stages each key stakeholder will be involved in, as well as the deadlines for their feedback. Include a schedule of office hours where they can easily reach you so that they can provide feedback in a private or group setting. At every stage of the project, be realistic, transparent, and honest—your stakeholders will notice and appreciate it.
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