How Do We Manage Our Stakeholders?

How Do We Manage Our Powerful, Influential and Important Stakeholders?

Project Stakeholder Management is important because it is the lifeblood of effective project relationships. This means not only knowing your stakeholders but also understanding their unique communication needs at various points in the project.” (Why stakeholder management is important)

Project stakeholders have interest, influence or power, or both over project outputs and project outcomes. Stakeholders can interfere or intervene at almost any stage of the project to either hinder or enable project progress. It is therefore essential that good project management includes identification of stakeholders and understanding their barriers and objections to the project or their needs and wants from the project.  Communication with stakeholders is essentially the lifeblood of the project and hence this module covers identifying stakeholders and the planning and enacting of stakeholder engagement.


Additional reading on the topic 'why stakeholder management is important' can be found here.

What is Project Stakeholder Management? Can We Use the Power/Interest Grid for Stakeholder Prioritisation?

Project management can not be successful without a good understanding and management of project management stakeholders. A common tool as presented on the slide is the power/interest grid presented by  Mendelow, A.L. in (1981). ‘Environmental Scanning – The Impact of the Stakeholder Concept, at the ‘ ICIS 1981 Proceedings, 20 – The International Conference on Information Systems.

Many Project Managers refer to this tool as the power/interest grid.  From experience we know that some stakeholders have a supreme power over projects if they hold the financial budget, or can prevent progress if they have influence over the legal systems in place.  Project management best practice involves the effective communication strategies expressed in the power/interest grid. More about this tool is presented in the later sessions of this module.

Eskerod, P. and Huemann, M. (2013), "Sustainable development and project stakeholder management: what standards say", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 6 No. 1, pp. 36-50.