Stakeholder Management: Some inputs from real life experiences
Who is a stakeholder in your project?
Anyone and everyone who has a stake is a stakeholder.
Example: All team members working on the project, System admin or System admin team, HR manager or HR team, project control office team, customer, sponsor, end customer or end user, tester, senior management, cross flow team, program, manager, portfolio manager, quality assurance team etc etc
Who is a key stakeholder?
A stakeholder who has the ability to make decision to terminate your project or anyone who has the ability to influence the key stakeholder to make such a decision.
How to manage stakeholders?
Follow these key steps:
1. Identify all stakeholders, that is, prepare a stakeholder register
2. Find out their details: Contact numbers, geographical locations etc
3. From the list of all stakeholders identify the key stakeholders
4. Identify key individuals from your team who will manage the key stakeholders
5. Prepare a stakeholder management strategy, this should include the following:
- Regular Cadence (which team member will talk to which stakeholder and with what frequency)
- Understand explicit and implicit expectations
- Map the expectations to tangible deliverable (what to they need, when do they need, why do they need)
- Think two level up. Prepare deliverable in such a way that your stakeholder can inturn use it with their own stakeholders
- Obtain honest feedback
- Act on the feedback
- Share the action and the improved results with the stakeholder