A complete guide to project stakeholder management
A complete guide to project stakeholder management – The beneficiary is an individual, group, or organization that is affected by the outcome of a project. They are interested in the success of the project and can be inside or outside the organization that sponsors it. Stakeholders can have a positive or negative impact on the project.
Many people are involved in running a project from start to finish. You need to know how to manage everyone, even those who do not work directly under you.
Stakeholder follow-up using project management software is a great way to keep things going and ensure stakeholder satisfaction and productivity.
Who can be a beneficiary? Some examples are as follows.
- Project Leader
- Senior Management
- Project team members
- Project client
- Resource Managers
- Line managers
- Project user group
- Product testers
- The group that is affected by the progress of the project
- The group that will be affected after the project is completed
- Project subcontractors
- Project consultants
It is a personal stakeholder like other project members and some of them are easier to manage than others. You need to learn to get along with different characters and make sure you have a productive conversation with them to know the goals of the project.
Why is stakeholder management necessary?
Stakeholders in project management should be treated like any other task on your to-do list: Prioritize them. During a project, one stakeholder may be more valuable than the other in terms of project objectives, while some stakeholders may demand more attention than others.
When we talk about stakeholder management, we mean building a positive relationship with them by meeting their expectations and whatever goal they have agreed on. But this relationship is not easy to achieve; You have to work hard to get it. You can gain their trust and build a positive relationship by actively communicating and listening to their needs.
One way to do this is to interview the project stakeholders:
you do not need to interview all of them, you just need to consider the most important ones for the interview. You may need to talk to experts to get the background needed for specific areas or groups, so be fully aware and ready to take advantage of that time when having personal conversations with stakeholders.
But know that stakeholders are not infallible. As mentioned earlier, their effects can be both negative and positive. Stakeholders may have incorrect or outdated information. This is where stakeholder management comes into play. Each stakeholder must provide you with data that is accurate and precise so that you do not make key project decisions based on the agenda of others.
Just as there is a process for everything in project management, there is a process to it. The main points of that process are stated below.
Documenting stakeholder communication
Do this formally in your project plan. Consider their names and roles in the organization they represent.
Record any conversations you have with these key project partners, both to record their interests and requests and to be able to verify their information later. If you are doing an interview, ask stakeholders if you can record those conversations, as it is important to document any history of interaction.
Execute the process for project stakeholder management
The next step is to continue the process of communicating with stakeholders and make sure that the process is transparent so that everyone knows what to expect. This includes project requests or feedback, and how these documents are documented and responded to must be subject to a formal review and approval process.
This lets the stakeholders know that the applications can be reviewed and you follow a process for these formal requests. As a result, it protects both sides from changes in scope and incorrect communications that could affect the project.
Provide frequent status reports
It is important to provide regular and timely project status reports that are appropriate for stakeholders. You can go into detail with team members, while managers want more information. Therefore, adjust the reports to suit your audience.
Don’t forget to follow up with stakeholders and ask them to see if they have feedback. In this way, you manage them and communicate with them in a preventive way to know if there is dissatisfaction or a decision has been made that will affect the project.
Eliminate incorrect information
Your stakeholder may be working on several projects, which means that they are not close to you. But that does not mean that they do not receive other information about your project from other sources. Stakeholders should not be involved in rumors or misinformation that may shake their views on the project.
If they make a wrong assumption or get the wrong information, you need to get rid of it and tell them the truth. Sometimes stakeholders may not want to hear the truth, but it is better for you to convey this truth to them so that you can control and manage it.
Follow these five steps to make sure all the important principles in your stakeholder management plan are covered.
1. List the stakeholders:
The first step to any good stakeholder management program is to identify the stakeholders.
2. Prioritize stakeholders:
Note which stakeholders will have the most impact on the project and at what stage their impact will be more or less.
Conclusion of project stakeholder management
Stakeholders can influence everyone in a project or organization, including senior management, project leaders, team members, customers, users, and more. As a project manager, it is important to prioritize and focus on the most important stakeholders, especially those with power, proximity, and urgency.