Communication 502: Understanding Stakeholder Analysis
Why do projects fail? According to the Project Management Institute (PMI,) 90% of the time it's due to poor communication. In this course, you'll learn the effective business communication skills needed for project success.
Stakeholder management is one of the essential skills for career advancement. If you can’t convince the buyers - both economic buyers and influencers - that you and your team can navigate through their organization, then you can’t sell...either internally or externally. For any project to succeed, you MUST have a stakeholder engagement strategy.
(And yes, you can self-report one PDU for your PMP® continuing education.)
All change management efforts - both internal and at client sites - require you to sell your ideas. The sales staff should be able to communication the vision of how things could be, but you – the specialist or subject matter expert – will show the "buyer" how to get there. Expect questions like “How will this change impact my people?” You’ll hear, “How much of my people’s time will this implementation take?” Or some form of, “How will we convince [insert group here] that this is a good idea?" You must answer clearly and concisely, and a good stakeholders analysis will help you do so, both in the sales meeting and during your work with your customer. If your stakeholder engagement skills are weak, you will fail even if you're lucky enough to get the sale.
This course is designed for technical people and subject matter experts who are frequently in front of customers. Participants will learn 1) the logic and process for a robust stakeholders analysis 2) some tips to build stakeholder engagement, and 3) a stakeholder matrix and a template designed for presentations to senior management.
In part one of the introduction you will learn:
We will demonstrate how stakeholders can be affected by a change in government policy. Upon complete student will download a real world case study designed to help understand effective business communication skills.
There are several definitions for the term "stakeholder." We prefer this one: "Influence on or Impacted by..."
Step 1: Characters. Set up a brainstorming session and list everyone - both inside and outside your client's enterprise - who may have an influence on might be impacted by.
Step 2: Columns. Create a list of variables for each stakeholder. Each variable will be a column in a grid. Typically, you'll start with 1) Influence On, 2) Impacted By, and 3) Support/Resist.
Step 3: Complete. Complete your matrix. You will do this early in the change management process, so you will have to make many assumptions and hypotheses.
Step 4: Confirm. Go out and talk to people! You've made several assuptions, go talk to people and see if you're correct...then update your matrix.
Do you want to build a great career? You MUST be able to communicate!
When senior executives are asked what technical people can do to advance their careers, the answer is quite consistent: Improve communication skills. Effective communication skills in the workplace are essential for every engineer, programmer, developer, statistician or biochemst, microbiologist....
I come from a technical background, and in my 15 years of management consulting, I've had the privilege of managing large groups of technically brilliant people. I've seen the career challenges you're seeing both as a young "techie," and also as a consultant and project manager. Learn some "Tools for Techies," and you'll be on your way to success.
Please feel free to contact me if you'd like:
- to share an idea for a new communication course.
- a new course about consulting.
- information about Lean Six Sigma (I'm a Black Belt.)
- information about Project Management (I'm a PMP®.)