Stakeholder Analysis is the first step in Stakeholder Management, an important process that successful people use to win support from others. Managing stakeholders helps them to ensure that their projects succeed where others might fail
Stakeholder analysis is the process of assessing a system and potential changes to it as they relate to relevant and interested parties. This information is used to assess how the interests of those stakeholders should be addressed in a project plan, policy, program, or other action.
Why Use Stakeholder Analysis?
A stakeholder-based approach gives you four key benefits:
- Getting Your Projects Into Shape
You can use the opinions of your most powerful stakeholders to help define your projects at an early stage. These stakeholders will then more likely support you, and their input can also improve the quality of your project.
- Winning Resources
community/Bite-SizedTraining/WinningSupport.Gaining support from powerful stakeholders can help you to win more resources, such as people, time or money. This makes it more likely that your projects will be successful.
- Building Understanding
By communicating with your stakeholders early and often, you can ensure that they fully grasp what you’re doing and understand the benefits of your project. This means that they can more actively support you when necessary.
- Getting Ahead of the Game
Understanding your stakeholders means that you can anticipate and predict their reactions to your project as it develops. This allows you to plan actions that will more likely win their support.
How to Conduct a Stakeholder Analysis.
There are three steps to follow in Stakeholder Analysis. First, identify who your stakeholders are. Next, work out their power, influence and interest, so that you know who you should focus on. Finally, develop a good understanding of the most important stakeholders, so that you know how they are likely to respond, and how you can win their support.
When you’ve completed your analysis, you can move on to use stakeholder planning to work out how you’ll communicate with each stakeholder.
Let’s explore the three steps of Stakeholder Analysis in more detail:
Step 1: Identify Your Stakeholders
Start brainstorming who your stakeholders are. As part of this, think of all the people who are affected your work, who have influence or power over it, or have an interest in its successful or unsuccessful conclusion.
Your boss,Shareholders, Government, Senior executives, Alliance partners, Trades associations, Your co-workers, Suppliers, The press, Your team, Lenders, Interest groups, CustomersAnalysts, The public, Prospective customers, Future recruits, The community, Your family, Key contributors, Key advisors
Step 2: Prioritize Your Stakeholders
You may now have a list of people and organizations that are affected your work. Some of these may have the power either to block that work or to advance it. Some may be interested in what you are doing, while others may not care, so you need to work out who you need to Training/HowtoPrioritize.
You can map out your stakeholders, and classify them according to their power over your work and their interest in it, on a Power/Interest Grid
Step 3: Understand Your Key Stakeholders
You now need to discover how your key stakeholders feel about your project. You also need to work out how best to engage them, and how to communicate with them.
Key questions that can help you understand your stakeholders include:
- 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, and what is the best way of communicating with them?
- What is their current opinion of your work? Is it based on good information?
- Who influences their opinions generally, and who influences their opinion of you? Do some of these influencers therefore become important stakeholders in their own right?
- If they aren’t likely to be positive, what will win them around to support your project?
- If you don’t think that you’ll be able to win them around, how will you manage their opposition?
- Who else might be influenced their opinions? Do these people become stakeholders in their own right?
You can ask your stakeholders these questions directly. People are often quite open about their views, and asking for their opinions is often the first step in building a successful relationship with them.