What is a Stakeholder?

Natasha Baker http://www.brighthub.com/office/project-management/articles/9846.aspx Stakeholders are people with a vested interest in the success of the project, whose support, or cooperation is necessary for the project to succeed. Stakeholder buy-in will make the difference in time to complete the project. In some cases, the biggest barrier to project success has been stakeholders. In project management stakeholders are people, groups, or institutions with interests in a project or program. Stakeholders can be customers, the local community, managerial staff, non-managerial staff, a government entity, and both private and public owners (shareholders). It can be virtually anyone as long as that person or group has something to do with the project. Lets take a general software company, probable stakeholders would be: y Those responsible for design and development Stakeholders' Interests, Impact, Priority Stakeholders can be listed in a table or spreadsheet with their key interests, potential level of project impact, and priority in relation to other stakeholders. Be careful to outline multiple interests, particularly those that are hidden in relation to project goals and objectives.

The key is to keep in mind that identifying interests is done with stakeholders' perspective in mind, not your own. This is difficult as interests are usually hidden and may contradict openly stated aims. Each interest should be related to the appropriate project phase; that is, interests change as the project moves from beginning to ending phases. With some stakeholders it may be crucial to extract interests by formally asking them questions such as:

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y y y

What are your project expectations? How do you benefit from successful project completion? Which stakeholders do you believe are in conflict with the project interests?

Once major interests are identified, it is also useful to outline how the project will be impacted if these are or are not met. In most cases, a simple annotation of positive (+), negative (-), or unknown (?) can be used as well as high (H), medium (M), low (L), or uncertain (?).

Stakeholder analysis is systematic gathering and analyzing of qualitative data to determine whose interests should be taken into account when developing and or implementing a policy, program, or project. Read on for an overview on how to undertake sample stakeholder analysis.

Stakeholder analysis increase the change for project success. Project managers use stakeholder analysis to identity the key stakeholder and to assess interests, positions, alliances, and importance given to the project by such stakeholders. Such knowledge allows project managers to interact more effectively with stakeholders and to increase support for a given policy, program, or project. Conducting such an analysis before project implementation allows project managers to detect and take measures to avoid misunderstandings and potential opposition to the project. What Are the Steps in Stakeholder Analysis? The process of sample stakeholder analysis involves eight major steps: 1. Plan: The first step in conducting a stakeholder analysis is to define the purpose of the analysis, identify the potential users of the information, and devise a plan for using the information. A discussion of these issues should be led by the ͞sponsor,͟ or initiator, of the stakeholder analysis. 2. Select an appropriate policy: Good stakeholder analysis focus on a specific project. In most cases, the sponsor identifies a project, but it is important to ensure that the policy in question is an appropriate project for a stakeholder analysis before the process begins. 3. Identify the key stakeholders: One crucial step in stakeholder analysis is to identify the various stakeholders and prepare a list of the same. The best approach is a priority list that defines the preference and set limits on the number of stakehodlers, based on the resources available. 4. Collect information: The nest step is to collect as much information as possible regarding the identified stakehodlers. The project management team needs to gather and review secondary information on the priority stakeholders from sources such as

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newspapers, institutional reports and publications, speeches, organization annual reports, political platforms, and other sources. Interview the priority stakeholders: The next step in stakeholder analysis is to gain accurate information on the stakeholder's positions, interests, and ability to affect the process. This is best done through a formal and structured interview process. Fill in the stakeholder table: This step of the process involves preparing a "stakeholder table" or arranging the answers of the interview and other the secondary information collected into a concise and standardized format.The purpose behind this is to make systematic comparisons, highlight the most significant information, and to ensure stakeholder identity anonymity if required. This allows the project management team to develop clear comparisons among the different stakeholders. Analyze the stakeholder table: The completed "stakeholder table" require analysis to compare information and develop conclusions on stakeholders' relative importance, knowledge, interests, positions, and possible allies regarding the policy in question. Using the information: The final step in stakehodler analysis is to put the information to good use. The information collected from stakeholder analysis finds use to provide input into other analyses, to develop action plans to increase support for a project, or to guide a participatory, consensus-building process.

Analyzing the Stakeholder Table The sample stakeholder analysis provides answers to the following questions:
y y y y y

Who are the most important stakeholders? What is the stakeholders' knowledge of the policy? What are the stakeholders' positions on the specific policy? What do the stakeholders see as possible advantages or disadvantages of the policy? Which stakeholders might form alliances?

A good stakeholder analysis allows project managers to identify stakeholders based on their influence, which in turn helps them develop support strategies, devise ways to secure stakeholder support for issues such as project risk, and overcome obstacles to successful project competition. Stakeholder Analysis Stakeholders are people with a vested interest in the success of the project, whose support, or cooperation is necessary for the project to succeed. Stakeholder buy-in will make the difference in time to complete the project. In some cases, the biggest barrier to project success has been stakeholders. In project management stakeholders are people, groups, or institutions with interests in a project or program. Stakeholders can be customers, the local community, managerial staff, non-managerial staff, a government entity, and both private and public owners (shareholders). It can be virtually anyone as long as that person or group has something to do with the project. Stakeholders will provide important information during the development stage and throughout the project. A stakeholder is anyone who will be affected by the project. It is important to conduct a stakeholder analysis to identify these individuals or groups including: y name y organization y role on the project y level of interest y level of influence y unique facts 3

By including key stakeholders in regular status meetings and sending this type of 4 . If for some reason the stakeholders͛ expectations are different than those of the project team. This information can then be used to refine the project purpose and objectives. these individuals could work against the project and keep it from achieving its objectives. A sample stakeholder analysis follows: y y Sample Stakeholder Analysis Stakeholder Analysis It is common for the project manager(s) to schedule face-to-face meetings with key stakeholders at the beginning of the project. this is an opportunity to communicate this and begin to manage these expectati ons. as stakeholder expectations often change over time. If the team misses an important stakeholder or doesn͛t manage the stakeholders͛ expectations. One of the most important things to get from these meetings is how the stakeholder defines project success (their expectations) .expectations (how they define success) ways to manage their expectations This information is important because it is these individuals who will identify the system requirements and provide project resources and support. These will also need to be managed throughout the project.

5 . the project manager can better manage these changing expectations. Stakeholder Analysis Template You can download a copy of this stakeholder analysis in the Project Management Media Gallery.information to other stakeholders as part of the project communications plan.

Stakeholders are all those who need to be considered in achieving project goals and whose participation and support are crucial to its success. So identification of all stakeholders is an important activity of the project manager to ensure project success. 2008 http://leadershipchamps.What is Stakeholder Analysis? Posted by Babou on March 9.wordpress. As all we know. Just a recap of definition of project stakeholder: Project stakeholders are individuals and organizations that are actively involved in the project. or whose interests may be affected as a result of project execution or project completion. stakeholders can be 1) individuals within the project 2) individua ls or departments within the organization & 3) individuals or groups outside the organization (can be influencers) Stakeholder Management processes for a project involves (but not limited to) 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) Identifying all stakeholders Documenting stakeholders needs Assessing & analyzing stakeholders interest/influence Managing stakeholders expectations Taking actions Reviewing status & repeat 6 .com/2008/03/09/what -is-stakeholder-analysis/ After review of definition of stakeholders and roles & responsibilities of few stakeholders like Project manager & Sponsor. it is good to deal in detail on Stakeholder Management & Analysis.

In this model. each stakeholder is mapped to different quadrant based on their interest on the project against the influence (power) they have over the project. It is used to identify all key (primary and secondary) stakeholders who have a vested interest in the issues with which the project is concerned. some of them: ͻ ͻ ͻ Power/Interest grid Power/Influence grid Influence/Impact grid Power/Interest grid is widely used tool in stakeholder analysis & it is used in assessing stakeholders (step 2). who may affect or be affected by the project Potential issues that could disrupt the project Key people for information distribution during executing phase Groups that should be encouraged to participate in different stages of the project Communication planning & stakeholder management strategy during project planning phase Ways to reduce potential negative impacts & manage negative stakeholders Engaging stakeholders throughout the project life cycle is a key to (but not a guarantee of) project͛s success. Managing stakeholders expectations & ensuring their active involvement is very much important to project as: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ It is indispensable for continuation of the project & its successful completion It gives opportunity to individuals or groups to express their ideas/issues/concerns over the project It gives a sense of accountability and enhances responsibility It enables effective risk identification & response planning It opens up excellent learning opportunity for both the project team and stakeholders There are multiple category of models available. 7 . and the relationships between the different stakeholders and the issues they care about most.What is Stakeholder Analysis? Stakeholder Analysis is an important technique for stakeholder identification & analyzing their needs. What are the benefits of Stakeholder Analysis? A stakeholder analysis can help a project to identify: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ The interests of all stakeholders. The aim of stakeholder analysis process is to develop a strategic view of the human and institutional landscape.

Low power. and talk to them to ensure that no major issues are arising. less interested people: put enough work in with these people to keep them satisfied. Project Manager can get list of key stakeholders from earlier projects executed in their organization. interested people: keep these people adequately informed. during the Initiating phase. 8 . In the Execution phase. Project manager should document relevant information regarding stakeholders͛ interests. will help shape the development of strategic actions and risk analysis. stakeholder analysis will help identify who. Stakeholder analysis is an important input for Project manager in Communication Planning. how and when stakeholders should be involved in project activities and whom to communicate regarding project progress depending on their responsibility & authority levels. less interested people: again.ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ High power. During the Planning phase. interested people: these are the people you must fully engage and make the greatest efforts to satisfy. These people can often be very helpful with the detail of your project. process of identifying stakeholders impacted by the project is crucial. project stakeholders have high influence over the project at the start and it decreases as the project continues. a detailed stakeholder analysis. In particular. involving all key stakeholders. Even the identified stakeholder is an organization. Stakeholder analysis can be undertaken throughout all stages of the project cycle. and their impact on project success. Moreover. High power. Low power. it is better to exactly document the key person͛s name for the organization to have better control over situation at times. but do not bore them with excessive communication. but not so much that they become bored with your message. monitor these people. level of involvement. but it definitely should be undertaken at the outset of a project. As a Project Manager we need to know ʹ when to do & use stakeholder analysis outputs in Project Management Life Cycle? Let us try to answer this question in detail.

General list of key stakeholders are: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ Project Manager. Customer/user. importance of & level of impact upon each stakeholder Identifying how best to engage stakeholders in the project by analyzing their reactions or response in different situations. Key stakeholder identification may be easy task to do. Project team members. Stakeholder identification is critical for any project ʹ usually it is done early planning stage. Performing organization. and capable of dealing with the project at stake? Are the stakeholders and their interests stable across the globe or is there any identifiable pattern exists? Are there major events/trends/activities currently affecting the stakeholders? 9 . 1) Stakeholder identification and documenting their interests (+ve or -ve) in the Project This is the first step in stakeholder analysis.During the Monitoring & Controlling phases. Identifying other or secondary stakeholders can be done either brainstorming or interviewing with experts/project management team on the project area. Project management team. Project manager can start with an analysis of the stakeholders and then link them to specific threat and opportunity factors. to what extent did it succeed? Who was in charge and how did local stakeholders respond? Who possesses claims ʹ including legal jurisdiction and customary use ʹ over the project/resources at stake? Is any government departments to be involved in this project? Are there national and/or international bodies involved in this project because of specific laws or treaties? Who are the people or groups most knowledgeable about. project manager with the help of project management team need to identify all individual or organizations impacted by the project. providing a baseline against which projects can monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of their engagement with stakeholders. Sponsor and major influencers. In Stakeholder identification process. and complete knowledge about stakeholders increases probability of project success. Some of the key questions project manger may ask at this step include(not limited to): ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ Who is threatening the target of this project? Who is most dependent on this project? Has there been a similar project in the market? If so. Following are the vital steps in any stakeholder analysis: ͻ ͻ ͻ Stakeholder identification and documenting their interests (+ve or -ve) in the project Assessing the power of. Above key stakeholders are actively involved in the project & whose interests may be affected as a result of project execution or project completion. and documenting their interests. the stakeholder analysis serves as a tool. both supportive and opposing.

The list of stakeholders may grow or shrink as the analysis progresses. Depend on the quadrant a stakeholder plotted. Key questions for this second step in a stakeholder analysis include(not limited to): ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ Who is directly responsible for decisions on issues important to the project? Who holds positions of responsibility in interested organizations? Who is influential in the project area (both thematic and geographic areas)? Who will be affected by the project? Who will promote/support the project. provided that they are involved? Who will obstruct/hinder the project if they are not involved? Who has been involved in the area (thematic or geographic) in the past? Who has not been involved up to now but should have been? Power ʹ Interest grid (as shown below) is the best tool to plot the stakeholders based on the outcome of above questions. stakeholders are organized and categorized according to their likely influence over decisions to be made. Different types of stakeholders will be engaged in different ways in the various stages of the project. try to learn about each stakeholder group in as much depth as possible. and the likely impact of project decisions upon them. Begin by brainstorming all possible stakeholders using a questionnaire(like the one listed above). project manager need to plan his future actions. the third step involves determining how to involve the different stakeholders. and the understanding deepens. Then research the general stakeholder behavior. 3) Identifying how best to engage stakeholders in the project by analyzing their reactions or response in different situations Finally.ͻ Is this project replaceable by other project(s)? Best tool in identifying the key stakeholders and their interests is brainstroming. Talk to various stakeholders. 2) Assessing the power of. and ask them who they would see as potential stakeholders for the initiative in question. Further. importance of & level of impact upon each stakeholder In this step. 10 .

Determining who needs or wants to be involved. a decision can be made on whether to pursue collaboration. If it is not possible or realistic to have all key stakeholders involved from the outset. dialogue. transparent approach during project development and implementation will help build ownership and commitment. to consultation. Once stakeholder views are understood. and when and how that involvement can be achieved provides the basis for developing collaborations. working together.from gathering and giving information. Using an inclusive. Good-faith efforts are often derailed because the parties are not skilled in working together. The importance of the process in planning and conducting successful collaborations cannot be overemphasized. then a process for gradual involvement may be needed. and partnership. and because insufficient attention is given to designing and managing it. 11 .

mindtools. Stakeholder Analysis is the technique used to identify the key people who have to be won over.. their input can also improve the quality of your project Gaining support from powerful stakeholders can help you to win more resources ʹ this makes it more likely that your projects will be successful By communicating with stakeholders early and frequently. and to your career. you can ensure that they fully understand what you are doing and understand the benefits of your project ʹ this means they can support you actively when necessary You can anticipate what people's reaction to your project may be. By engaging the right people in the right way in your project.com/pages/article/newPPM_07. so you know who you should focus on. The benefits of using a stakeholder-based approach are that: y y y y You can use the opinions of the most powerful stakeholders to shape your projects at an early stage. After you have used this tool and created a stakeholder map.htm "Stakeholder management is critical to the success of every project in every organization I have ever worked with. Stakeholder Management is an important discipline that successful people use to win support from others. Not only does this make it more likely that they will support you. How to Use the Tool: The first step in Stakeholder Analysis is to identify who your stakeholders are. The final step is to develop a good understanding of the most important stakeholders so that you know how they are likely to respond. and so that you can work out how to win their supportʹ you can record this analysis on a stakeholder map. You then use Stakeholder Planning to build the support that helps you succeed.. The next step is to work out their power.Stakeholder Analysis. Identify Your Stakeholders 12 . you can make a big difference to its success. and build into your plan the actions that will win people's support. The steps of Stakeholder Analysis are explained below: Step 1. the more likely it is that your actions will impact people who have power and influence over your projects. It helps them ensure that their projects succeed where others fail. The more people you affect. influence and interest. the actions you take and the projects you run will affect more and more people." As you become more successful in your career. These people could be strong supporters of your work ʹ or they could block it. Winning support for your projects by Rachel Thompson http://www. you can use the stakeholder planning tool to plan how you will communicate with each stakeholder.

but are unlikely to have power over it. or have an interest in its successful or unsuccessful conclusion.The first step in your stakeholder analysis is to brainstorm who your stakeholders are. As part of this. think of all the people who are affected by your work. who have influence or power over it. your boss is likely to have high power and influence over your projects and high interest. Shareholders Alliance partners Suppliers Lenders Analysts Future recruits Government Trades associations The press Interest groups The public The community Step 2. For example. Make sure that you identify the correct individual stakeholders within a stakeholder organization. Some of these may have the power either to block or advance. ultimately you must communicate with people. Prioritize Your Stakeholders You may now have a long list of people and organizations that are affected by your work. Your family may have high interest. The table below shows some of the people who might be stakeholders in your job or in your projects: Your boss Senior executives Your coworkers Your team Customers Prospective customers Your family Remember that although stakeholders may be both organizations and people. and classify them by their power over your work and by their interest in your work. Map out your stakeholders on a Power/Interest Grid on our freetemplate as shown in figure 1. Some may be intere sted in what you are doing. others may not care. 13 .

A good way of doing this is by color coding: showing advocates and supporters in green. You also need to know how best to engage them in your project and how best to communicate with them. how will you manage their opposition? Who else might be influenced by their opinions? Do these people become stakeholders in their own right? A very good way of answering these questions is to talk to your stakeholders directly ʹ people are often quite open about their views. You can summarize the understanding you have gained on the stakeholder map. and who influences their opinion of you? Do some of these influencers therefore become important stakeholders in their own right? If they are not likely to be positive. blockers and critics in red. but not so much that they become bored with your message. and others who are neutral in orange. Understand Your Key Stakeholders You now need to know more about your key stakeholders. y Low power. Step 3. and talk to them to ensure that no major issues are arising.Someone's position on the grid shows you the actions you have to take with them: y High power. and which stakeholders are likely to be advocates and supporters or your project. less interested people: again. These people can oft en be very helpful with the detail of your project. y High power. but do not bore them with excessive communication. interested people: these are the people you must fully engage and make the greatest efforts to satisfy. what will win them around to support your project? If you don't think you will be able to win them around. less interested people: put enough work in with these people to keep them satisfied. so that you can easily see which stakeholders are expected to be blockers or critics. Key questions that can help you understand your stakeholders are: y y y y y y y y y What financial or emotional interest do they have in the outcome of your work? Is it positive or negative? What motivates them most of all? What information do they want from you? How do they want to receive information from you? What is the best way of communicating your message to them? What is their current opinion of your work? Is it based on good information? Who influences their opinions generally. 14 . interested people: keep these people adequately informed. monitor these people. y Low power. and asking people's opinions is often the first step in building a successful relationship with them. You need to know how they are likely to feel about and react to your project.

F ¡ ¢£e 2 s ¤¥¦ s an e§ ample of this ʹ in this e§ ample¨ you can see that a lot of effort n ee ©s to b e put into p ersuading Piers and Michael of th e b en efits of th e project ʹ Janet and Amanda also need to managed well as powerful supporters   Ex .

he n e§ t step is to prioritize  them b y power and interest.  he first stage of this is brainstorm who your stak eholders are. What a ctions can you tak e to get more from your supporters or win over your critics     oints: As the work you do and th e projects you run b ecome more important. Others may be strong supporters of your work. Stakehold er Management is the process b y which you identify your k ey stakeholders and win their support. and to plot this on a Power/Interest grid. Conduct a full stakeholder analysis.pl : You can create your own e§ ample of stakehold er analysis at work ʹ wh eth er for your current role¨ a job you want to do or a new project.  15 . Stak eholder Analysis is th e first stage of this. you will affect more and more people. where you identify and start to understand your most important stakeholders. Some of th ese p eople ha ve th e power to undermine your projects and your position. Ask yourself wh ether you are communicating as effectively as you should b e with your stak ehold ers. he final stage is to get an understanding of what motivates your stakehold ers and howyou need to win them around.

Make sure you create this box large enough to fit in the various stakeholders when it is the appropriate time. Label across the top starting at the left with ͞Significant influence. clients. etc. Those in the high importance/influence category will be the first ones to consult since they carry a heavy weight in the direction of the project. you can then use this list to weigh the influence of each person. Label down the left side starting at the top with ͞Significant Importance. your matrix will be a graphic display of who hold s the most importance and influence (the group in the upper left-hand corner) and who holds the least amount of influence and importance (the group in the lower right-hand corner). Begin to organize your stakeholders according to importance and influence. Divide each quadrant into fourths again.͟ ͞Some influence.͟ 5.͟ ͞No influence. 6. Once created.͟ ͞Some Importance.brighthub.͟ ͞Little Importance.How Do You Make a Stakeholder Analysis Matrix? Ronda Roberts http://www. Begin by making a list of anyone whom has interest or influence over your project.͟ 4. Examples of stakeholders may be investors. When you are done. 16 . You should now have sixteen quadrants.͟ ͞No Importance. 2. Draw a box divided into four equal quadrants. 3. chair persons.aspx Creating these simple matrices requires a pen and some paper.͟ ͞little influence. Here is a list of the next steps: 1.com/office/project-management/articles/3713. You will also require the input of your team members.

Therefore. company name? What are the stakeholder expectations. it is fairly important to first have the questions in your mind before creating a Stakeholder Register. Note: A stakeholder can also be an entity. Next. You can customize this list as per your project communication requirements. interests. you͛d typically create a list of all project stakeholders and then determining their expectations. Here is a sample stakeholder register template: 17 . designation. and influence on the project. Therefore.Stakeholder Register Example and Template Rupen Sharma http://www. The Stakeholder Register is a document that is shared with project stakeholders. impact. let's look at the Stakeholder Register template and a Stakeholder Register example. contact information. The trick is to have enough information to make it useful and not too much that͛ll render it bulky. The act of getting answers to these questions is called Stakeholder Analysis. ThePower/Interest grid and the Influence/Impact grid are useful during stakeholder analysis. A Stakeholder Register is a document that contains a list of external and internal project stakeholders.brighthub.com/office/project-management/articles/96416. In Stakeholder Analysis. it should never contain information that is damaging or can be construed in a negative manner. impact. and requirements? Which stakeholders are critical for the entire project and which ones are more active for specific project phases? How often do stakeholders require communication and what is the preferred communication method? What type of communication is required? Is there a reporting relationship between stakeholders? These are some of the questions that a Stakeholder Register addresses. Stakeholder Register Template A Stakeholder Register is only as good as the questions it manages to answer.aspx Which stakeholder can be a serious road block? What are the key expectations of stakeholders? How often should there be communication between stakeholders? Let͛s look at the project stakeholder register for the answers Introduction to Stakeholder Registers A Stakeholder is any person or entity that can influence the success of a project in a negative or positive manner. such as an organization. The register typically addresses the following questions: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ What are the stakeholder names.

Stakeholder Register Example Now. After conducting Stakeholder Analysis. Negative Influencer. The populate the Stakeholder Register given a specific and simplistic project situation. she is probably an Influencer. Take care not to make it into a bulky document. there are two external stakeholders and on internal. These answers are then entered into a stakeholder register. A stakeholder can influence the project in many ways. For the Stakeholder Register of the larger register. As you can see in the Stakeholder Register displayed above.As you can see. see image below. You can add and remove columns as you deem suitable for your project. The external stakeholders require weekly communication via video conferencing. Make sure you spend time on this and use appropriate tools. In this example. you͛d get answers to the questions listed above. 18 . let͛s see how the Stakeholder Register is populated. there are generally four categories: Positive Influencer. This is probably because the development team is not located in the same geography as the stakeholder. Supporter. which she is responsible for. Mandy Ali is a supporter. This is probably because the project is part of a larger initiative. and Road Block. the stakeholder register template has columns that address specific questions. such as theSalience Model for Stakeholder Management. The value of a Stakeholder Register is dependent on Stakeholder Analysis.

is a simple tool that helps you categorize project stakeholders with increasing power and interest in the project. This tool helps you focus on the key stakeholders who can make or break your project. Next. During the stakeholder analysis of a project. let͛s see what the Power/Interest Grid looks like. The four quadrants of the Power/Interest Grid are shown below. So. which is also known as the Power/Interest Matrix. you can determine which stakeholders to manage closely and which stakeholders to put minimum effort in. this helps you in stakeholder prioritization. You should know what it is and how to apply it. 19 .What Is the Power/Interest Grid? Rupen Sharma http://www. you: y y y y Document the interests and motivations of stakeholders in the project Identify conflicting interests between stakeholders Identify relationships between stakeholders Determine the level of participation required from each stakeholder The Power Interest Grid in stakeholder prioritization pertains to stakeholder interests in the project.aspx Managing a project or an initiative involves various stakeholders. Stakeholder Management is a key role of a project manager.brighthub. In turn. which ones should you focus on? Use the Power/Interest Grid. By using this matrix. Some of these stakeholders are more critical than others.com/office/project-management/articles/80523. This helps you channel your time and energy on the stakeholders that have the most power and interest in project success. Each quadrant gives you an indication of the level of stakeholder management that you͛ll have to employ and may also influence thetype of communication style. Keeping Track of Stakeholders The Power/Interest Grid. PMP Tip: The Power/Interest Grid is part of Project Communication Management as per the fourth version of the PMBOK. Power/Interest Grid Template The Power/Interest Grid contains four quadrants.

your business development manager (the person that got your organization the contract) does not need to be managed closely. In turn. You may want to include her in the Monitor quadrant. For example. You might think a certain stakeholder has a high level of interest in project success. Drawing Out Stakeholder Interests The following questions can help you identify the interests of stakeholders: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ What do stakeholders expect from the project and how do they benefit? Are there any conflicting interests that the stakeholder may have with the project? How committed is the stakeholder to the project? Is he/she willing to commit tangible resources? Are there relationship conflicts between stakeholders that can hinder the project? By getting answers to these questions. in relative terms. However. a project manager has a very high interest in ensuring the project is successful. For example.Stakeholders that lie in the Manage Closely quadrant can easily ensure project failure. The sign-off authority on the deliverables is someone who͛ll fall in the Manage Closely quadrant in the Power/Interest Grid. suppose you are the project manager of a consulting project. As you might have already deduced. this will reduce the project negative risk caused by stakeholder mismanagement. you͛ll be able to determine the actual interests of stakeholders and manage them appropriately by using the Power/Interest Grid in stakeholder prioritization. interest is very subjective and can be error prone. Therefore. This success would in turn impact the bottom line of the organization. identifying and gauging the interest levels of stakeholders is critical when using the Power/Interest Grid in stakeholder prioritization. may actually not. Hence. However. As a matter of fact. if you don͛t manage them properly. The bottom line is of very high interest to the CEO and CFO. there are many softskills for project manager qualifications that focus on Communication and Stakeholder Management. the CEO and CFO interest will not be as interested in your project success as your Program Manager. but in relative terms. there are several other factors that play a role in impacting the bottom line. 20 .

For example. If you can't gauge the level of interest of stakeholders. and she will most probably say.brighthub. Example of a Power/Interest Grid for Stakeholder Prioritization Suppose you are kickstarting a new project. Before you use the Power/Interest grid for stakeholder prioritization.Prioritizing Stakeholders With a Power/Interest Grid Rupen Sharma http://www. Looking at the list above. You can get the formal authority from the organizational hierarchy. Unlike Interest. one possible Power/Interest Grid for stakeholder prioritization is shown below 21 . if the stakeholder expresses a high level of interest. Typically. Let͛s walk through an example. The project involves the creation of a software application for a client. However. You can do this by asking direct and indirect questions. there are more.com/office/project-management/articles/80549. ͞That͛s an interesting project!͟ It is for this very reason you should dig deeper. you might ask a stakeholder who is remotely connected with the project about his interest in the project. Project stakeholders usually have formal and informal authority. I have mentioned a small number of stakeholders. The project has the following stakeholders: ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ ͻ Architect: Jacob User Experience Lead: Samantha Testing Lead: Masakali Client Site Project Manager: Om Business Development Manager: Mora Competitors: XYZ Organization Project Sponsor: Clark Project Auditors: Ram and Tikku For simplicity's sake.aspx You are conducting a Stakeholder Analysis and need a way to assess the relative power/interest of each stakeholder. Power is substantially easier to quantify. you'll need to manage the risk appropriately. then you might want to explore whether the stakeholder has any conflicting interests or the motivational factors that lead to the high level of interest. For example. which can then be used to influence the outcome of a project. Gauging the interest of a stakeholder is not as easy as it seems. you need to have a list of stakeholders and have their interest in the project documented. Many stakeholders may not have the designation but have significant informal authority. The Power/Interest Grid is created by gauging the power and interest of each project stakeholder. The Power/Interest grid is a helpful tool for such a situation. The grid illustrates the power/interest relative to other stakeholders as well. don͛t just consider formal (by designation) authority.

is not doing well. the communication for the stakeholders varies with the project and the project scenario. as a project manager. Key Points in the Power/Interest Grid for Stakeholder Prioritization To understand the key points in using the Power/Interest grid for stakeholder prioritization. The person with the most power and interest to influence the application performance is the architect. The key here is that you should know that stakeholders that are in: ͻ ͻ High Power. a major faux-pas would be to send these stakeholders the daily team meeting notes. Similarly. let͛s look at an example. it was found that the cost of the project is going too high. As you can see. such as application performance. you would manage him/her closely. Leave the micro details out. High Interest quadrant need to be fully engaged. the power of the architect in ensuring project success would increase. you should know and understand your audience 22 . the project sponsor would move up to the Manage Closely quadrant. In such a scenario. the Power/Interest grid may evolve. In this case. These are the stakeholders you spend the most time and effort in managing. For communication to be effective. may demand more frequent project updates and hence may need to be managed more closely. High Power. if a certain aspect of the project. who was in the Keep Informed quadrant. you will need to monitor it more closely. Suppose in a project audit.Depending on the project scenario. The project sponsor. Low Interest quadrant must not be bored with over communication. For example. Hence. .

PMP Tip: The Influence/Impact grid is part of Project Communication Management as per the fourth version of the PMBOK. a stakeholder that has the ability to set deadlines and hence the project schedule would be classified as high impact. the support isn͛t provided and to make matters the stakeholder influenced others to not accept your idea. which is also known as the Influence/Impact matrix. For example. spend time as per influence and impact stakeholders have. Influence is the level of involvement the person has and impact is the ability of the stakeholder to bring out a desired change. By definition. You could avoid such scenarios by using the Influence/Impact grid. Introduction The Influence/Impact grid. you can determine which stakeholders to manage closely and which stakeholders to put minimum effort in. This tool is very similar to the Power/Interest or Power/Influence grids.com/office/project-management/articles/81618. it helps you create a communication and stakeholder strategy. you can prioritize stakeholders requests. The Influence/Impact grid in stakeholder management pertains to the level of influence stakeholders have on the project. Influence/Impact Grid 23 . is a tool that helps you understand which stakeholders have the most influence and the impact they can make on project success.What is the Influence/Impact Grid (Influence/Impact Matrix)? Rupen Sharma http://www. During the Stakeholder Analysis of a project. let͛s see how the Influence/Impact Grid looks like. you need support for a couple of ideas from one of the stakeholders. and lead your project to a success without stakeholder conflicts. In addition.aspx In a meeting. This could be during project planning or project execution.brighthub. By using this matrix. you: y y y y y y y y Document the interests and motivations of stakeholders in the project Which stakeholder has influence over project resources? Identify the stakeholders that can make the project unsuccessful Identify conflicting interests and relationships between stakeholders Identify stakeholders whose influence evolves during the project Determine communication media and style is best suited for each stakeholder Etc. This stakeholder would also have the ability to dictate the length of the critical path. By focusing on the key set of project stakeholders. Unfortunately. You should know what it is and how to apply it. This helps you channel you time and energy on the stakeholders that can make-or-break your project. Next.

may actually not. Stakeholders that lie in the Manage Closely quadrant can easily ensure project failure. if you don͛t manage them properly. As you might have already deduced. Questions to Determine Stakeholder Influence and Impact The following questions can help you gage the level of influence and impact of stakeholders have on the outcome of your project: y y y y y y y What are the responsibilities of the stakeholders? What do stakeholders expect from the project and how to they benefit? Are there any conflicting interests that the stakeholder may have with the project? How committed is the stakeholder to the project? Is he/she willing to commit tangible resources? What are the consequences of the not managing this stakeholder? Can stakeholders influence others. Each quadrant gives you an indication of the level of stakeholder management that you͛ll have to employ. suppose you the project manager of a software product development project. The four quadrants of the Influence/Impact Grid is shown below. you͛ll be able to determine the actual influence of stakeholders and manage them appropriately by using the Influence/Impact grid for stakeholder management. The sign-off authority on the deliverables is someone who͛ll fall in the Manage Closely quadrant in the Influence/Impact Grid. For example. Hence. identifying and gaging the interest levels of stakeholders is critical when using the Influence/Impact grid for stakeholder management.The Influence/Impact grid contains four quadrants. influence is very subjective and can be error prone. You might think a certain stakeholder has high level of influence in project success. who are the dominant stakeholders? Are there any threats posed by stakeholders? By getting answers to these questions. 24 . but in relative terms.

Let͛s walk through an example of using the influence/Impact grid in stakeholder management. 25 . Example of a Power/Influence Matrix Suppose you are kick starting a new project.brighthub. The Influence/Impact grid is created by gaging the influence and impact of each project stakeholder. Gaging the influence and impact of a stakeholder is not as easy as it seems. The project has the following stakeholders: y y y y y y y Technical Consultant: Jacob Risk Consultant: Nasir Lead Tester: Masakali Project Manager at Client Site: Om Business Dev Manager: Mora Sponsor of Project: Clark UX Head: Samantha Typically. However. The grid illustrates the influence and impact relative to other stakeholders. A prerequisite to using the Influence/Impact grid in stakeholder management is that you should have evaluated the influence and impact for each project stakeholder. you can make the most of the Influence/Impact grid. Looking at the list above. Now. The project involves the creation of a software application for a client. you can draw a correlation between the level influence and the level of involvement a stakeholder has in the project. impact is also subjective and can be a variable of the project scenario and the structure of the organization. By understanding the dynamics of a project. one possible Influence/Impact matrix or grid is shown below.Example of the Influence/Impact Grid Rupen Sharma http://www.com/office/project-management/articles/82899. let's take a loot at how to apply the Influence/Impact grid in stakeholder management.aspx Which stakeholder has the most influence and the ability to use that influence for project success? This a typical problem faced by many project managers. there'd be more project stakeholders to manage. Similarly. This can be subjective and later on in this article we'll explore techniques that can help you make it less subjective.

Therefore. read the Using a Decision Trees Example in Project Risk Management to Calculate Expected Monetary Value article. The other key success factor is to gage the influence and impact of each stakeholder accurately. To read an example of such a decision.Depending on the project scenario. let͛s look at an example. the Influence/Impact matrix may look like the one shown above. Decisions that can change the direction of a project usually involve stakeholders that are in the Keep Satisfied or Manage Closely quadrants. provided that they are involved? Who is influential in the project area and what areas do they have influence over? Have other projects faced similar problems? If yes. Another example would be could be when certain decisions need to be made by using a Decision Tree. The key to using the Influence/Impact matrix is to understand the project scenario. such as: y y y Who will promote/support the project. but may also evolve to the one shown below if the project is hit by massive cost overruns caused by poor risk mitigation strategies. Key Points in the Influence/Impact Grid in Stakeholder Management To understand the key points in using the Influence/Impact grid in stakeholder management. You can do this by asking questions. the influence and impact of each stakeholder may vary. which consultant did they have on board? 26 .

Examples of Using the Power/Influence Matrix for Stakeholder Management Rupen Sharma http://www. you are managing a project. the vendor should have been identified and placed in the Manage Closely quadrant. Tip: After you have created a Power/Influence. Stakeholders are placed in each quadrant based on their level of influence and the power (authority) they possess. This translated to having very few meetings with the vendor. 27 .aspx About which project stakeholder to give time too? Or. Inevitably. This example illustrates the consequences of not placing project stakeholders in the appropriate quadrant.com/office/project-management/articles/82901. Suppose. the vendor was identified as a stakeholder and placed in the Monitor quadrant.brighthub. Suppose. Let's take an example that is slightly more complicated than the previous example. review it with people to gain expert judgment. Before using the Power/Influence matrix. meetings were scheduled as per the Monitor classification. This minor change in the communication plan has lead to the project coming back on track. you find that one of the vendors is consistently delaying the project by not delivering as per the expectation set. In this example. After conducting a fishbone analysis of the delay. This means that while planning the communication strategy for the project. Let's look at another example. Similar to the Power/Interest grid and the Influence/Impact matrix. To make matters worse. the activities of this vendor lie on the critical path of the project. are you wondering how to get the most out of your stakeholders? Let's take a look at some examples of using the Power/Influence matrix for stakeholder management. Not only Project Managers. Power/Influence Matrix for Stakeholder Management The communication strategy of a project depends on the Power/Influence mat ix. this will lead to a frustrated client and the project is surely headed for disaster. If you get this step wrong. you have a project in which there is a client who wants to be updated every week on the status of the project and you have placed this stakeholder in the Monitor quadrant. When the project execution began. Let's take a simplistic example. the Power/Influence matrix for stakeholder management has fours quadrants. it only makes sense to closely monitor the vendor's performance by holding weekly status meetings. you will rarely have weekly check points with this client. the consequences will lead to ineffective stakeholder management and communication within the project. The Schedule Performance Index is consistently under 0. but many other types managers who have stakeholders use the Power/Influence grid to for effective stakeholder management. What led to this problem? During stakeholder analysis.8 and now it seems the project is probably not going to meet the deadline. you need to place each stakeholder in one of the quadrants of the Power/Influence grid.

However. This means that the vendor needs to be in the Manage Closely quadrant. You should revisit it as the project evolves. The for this is that stakeholder that were deemed to be in one quadrant any very well end up in another when the project is under fire. if during the course of the project. the critical path changes and the activity performed by the vendor is now in the critical path. a vendor performing an activity that is not in the critical path. might not require close management. 28 .The Power/Influence grid for stakeholder management need not be a static artifact. For example.

The new PMBOK Guide lists four classification models: y y y y Power/Interest grid Power/Influence grid Influence/Impact grid Salience model (classes of stakeholders based on their power. see Lucid Thought 24) uses the three axes of Attitude. and power of each stakeholder for efficient communications.brighthub.a way to look concurrently at the attitude. and Interest. The PMBOK® Guide covers Stakeholder Analysis as a tool and technique under the Identify Stakeholders process group. with a node at each extreme. excels at taking aspects of all of these and getting it into one graphic from which you can start to literally see your stakeholders in a different light. and Attitude.com/office/project-management/articles/23481. The set up This is a follow-up to my earlier article on Stakeholder Identification. interest. and power. literally ʹ with a model that includes not just Power verus Interest. Look for extremes. Using the model 29 . urgency. See the attached image as an example. all together. and negative 1. providing some examples. Congratulations. perhaps using a scale of positive 1.Spheres of Influence http://www. I͛d like to build on that and provide you with a couple of further references ʹ and a new dimension. The model (credited to Lucidus Consulting. in my opinion.aspx So. and legitimacy) The model I share with you. Think of each stakeholder in terms of attitude. 2. Power. Attitude: are they supportive? Are they detractors? Where do they fit on this scale? Power: regardless of attitude. What to do Here's what to do. influence. 2 and 3. each running from negative to positive extremes. you have identified your stakeholders. Interest. or Interest versus Attitude. can they influence the project for better or for worse? In others words. Now what? This article discusses a way to analyze these stakeholders to get the most out of each of them for your project . but all three: Power. An excellent article on stakeholder analysis has already been written on BrightHub by Ronda Levine. and 3. what can they DO with their attitude? Interest: How deeply "invested" is the stakeholder in the project's outcome? Compile a list of your stakeholders and rate them along these three attributes.

This yields eight ͞spheres͟ (cubes in the original article) with the following names: Trip Wire: Low Power. used to caricature the eight points in their model to help convey the idea more powerfully. Negative Attitude Acquaintance: Low Power. They have the power and attitude to help. describes this model in good detail and has a suggested strategy for each of the stakeholder types. Positive Attitude Savior: High Power. The book. with a node at each extreme. Low Interest. High Interest. After you͛ve fully identified the set of stakeholders. Positive Attitude Turning now from analysis to management. Low Interest. Negative Attitude Friend: Low Power. Negative Attitude Saboteur: High Power. the Sleeping Giant is a possible source of tremendous support for your project. Power. ͞Practical Project Risk Management: The ATOM Methodology". You can see how this analysis helps mold the ways in which you should communicate with the different sets of stakeholders identified here. by David Hillson and Peter Simon. For example. The ͞Spheres of Influence͟ version of the model is my own. Negative Attitude Time Bomb: High Power. Low Interest. High Interest. they just need to be ͞awakened͟ to the possibilities of benefit that the project offers them. Positive Attitude Irritant: Low Power. By using these Spheres of Influence. special strategy. each of these ͞personalities͟ for your stakeholders can be approached with a separate. Positive Attitude Sleeping Giant: High Power. see Lucid Thought 24) uses the three axes of Attitude. and Interest. High Interest. perhaps you can stop going around in circles with your project stakeholders! 30 . each running from negative to positive extremes. High Interest. Low Interest.The model (credited to Lucidus Consulting. put them thorugh this analysis to see where they fit ʹ and develop a separate custom strategy for communications with each of these stakeholders. I suggest you use this model during your next stakeholder analysis.