Engaging with stakeholders properly can be extremely beneficial for your business. Building a strong relationship with them can make a huge difference in the management of the project and also for future opportunities. Therefore, stakeholder management is crucial to ponder upon.
When you manage stakeholders in an efficient manner, you are able to demonstrate your expectations from the project to them, in a better way. They will also feel a part of the entire process and the outcome will be beneficial for all parties. Thus, putting in some effort to engage properly with your stakeholders is important.
Tips to Improve Stakeholder Engagement and Management:
So how can you boost your stakeholder management? Let’s have a look.
- Start your Conversations Early:
The earlier you start a conversation with your stakeholder, the easier it is for them to trust you. The main aim here is to get the message out of the project, from you directly. It is important to know that if a stakeholder feels left out in the process, they will leave you unsatisfied and disengaged during the entire journey. Thus, do not let them set a poor impression of you and start a conversation with them in the early stages.
- Set a Schedule:
As a business owner, you have a lot to do. You are the sole person who is creating new ideas,generating new projects and engaging with new people to open possibilities for your business. Thus, creating a schedule for when you can communicate with stakeholders is very important. It is easy to forget about this task in the swarm of other chores that have to be done.
Also keep your conversation minimal. Remember that the key is to update them, share the project progress and keep the engagement limited. It saves you time but helps you take the stakeholder in confidence.
- Honesty is the Key:
If you are not being honest with your stakeholders, you are preparing to go downhill. Transparency is the key to developing trust. Don’t hide things about the project and offer visual aids like maps or update reports to the stakeholder on a regular basis. Being transparent, honest and open will unfold new opportunities for you.
- Be a Good Listener:
Although you are the one who has more to say and update, being a good listener is also very important. Whether you are meeting your stakeholder personally or you are having a virtual meeting; always keep a light smile on your face. Make eye contact and ask little questions to reflect that you are taking interest in whatever they have to say.
Keep a notebook along to write down any important points. Even if you are good at remembering, write down a few points to give a sense of accomplishment to the stakeholder for his engagement session.
- Collaborate and Create Together:
Informing the stakeholders about each step is definitely important. But ensuring that they participate in the project equally is also very crucial. The best outcome is when the stakeholder and you are able to come together and create the final outcome, on one platform. Make decisions together and boost equal participation.
Working towards stakeholder management and efficient engagement is an effort that needs to be made consciously as it has a great impact on reducing possible risks. You are going to face various challenges in managing stakeholders efficiently but if you are able to build a strong relationship with them, it will have a positive impact on your business, in the long run.
Suman(Kul Prasad) Pandit is a graduate from Tribhuvan University, Nepal with four-year experience in corporate and start-up sectors in Nepal. Being a responsible & sustainable business enthusiast he is dedicated to business education to solve problems in entrepreneurship and business growth.