Assisting in Project Stakeholder Management

“Independence is the paradigm of responsible, I am self-reliant, I can choose.” – Steven R. Covey. Covey explained that “we come from a place of assuming that the way we see things is the way they should be.” As individuals, we are often so focused on our own paradigm – the way we perceive, view, understand, or even interpret our projects. This can influence the the steps, effort, resources, or budget decisions necessary to make those projects successful.

When we become too focused on our view, our own personal paradigm, our tunnel vision leave us wondering “What’s In It For Me (WIIFM)?” Then, each member of a project team (or the key stakeholders) lose sight of “What’s In It for the Organization?” We stop asking, “Does this project align to our organization’s mission?” and, the project starts to spiral off-track. We hit the point where power struggles occur, requirements get missed, timelines lag, and more.

This is where partnering with the project’s Change Manager proves most effective. In this instance, Change Management is not Change Control; rather, it refers to Organizational Change Management (OCM) – the people side of the project.

The Change Manager will help guide the project’s communications; ensure the project’s goals are aligned with the mission of the organization; host mini-Kaizen events to help complete RACI charts; and  create visual reports to share with Steering Committee members or other C-Suite administrators. The Change Manager’s role is also valuable in facilitating discussions to find users’ pain points with the project; managing online communication venues to “get the inside scoop” for the team, and more.

Ninety percent of a Project Manager’s job is spent communicating.

Let the Change Manager define the Who? What? When? Where? and Why? of many of those project communications, building off and/or guiding the Project Manager’s efforts.

The Project Manager’s Stakeholder Register serves as the basis for the Change Management and Communications plans. So, the Change Manager becomes a great resource for locating additional stakeholders, determining their degree of influence on the project, and assessing whether their levels of open conflict towards the project fall.

Project Manger can rely on the Change Manager to help write SMART project goals; monitor and re-engage stakeholders; determine the frequency of communication; explain policies; assist with training; and, most importantly, build buy-in. Lastly, the Change Manager will guide the process to help stakeholder’s set priorities.  All these items are done in partnership.

Let your project’s Change Manager help bridge you the gap with stakeholders; help you share the value of the project; and clarify all levels of WIIFM so that the effort shifts, and the project-focused paradigm becomes the new norm. Click here for a condensed Change Management communications plan. [NOTE: link to the file also attached to this email and online.] At Project Genetics, we offer Project Management, Change Management, Agile and Scaled Agile, Enterprise … Visit our website [be sure to link to the URL for the website] today for more great tips and tools!

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