Remember that although stakeholders may be both organizations and people, ultimately you must
communicate with people. Make sure that you identify the correct individual stakeholders within a
Step 2. Prioritize Your Stakeholders: You may now have a long list of people and organizations that are
affected by your work. Some of these may have the power either to block or advance. Some may be
interested in what you are doing, others may not care. Map out your stakeholders on a Power/Interest
Grid as shown below, and classify them by their power over your work and by their interest in your work.
For example, your boss is likely to have high power and influence over your projects and high interest.
Your family may have high interest, but are unlikely to have power over it. Someone's position on the
grid shows you the actions you have to take with them:
High power, interested people: these are the people you must fully engage and make the
greatest efforts to satisfy.
High power, less interested people: put enough work in with these people to keep them
satisfied, but not so much that they become bored with your message.
Low power, interested people: keep these people adequately informed, and talk to them to
ensure that no major issues are arising. These people can often be very helpful with the detail of
Low power, less interested people: again, monitor these people, but do not bore them with
Step 3. Understand Your Key Stakeholders: You now need to know more about your key stakeholders.
You need to know how they are likely to feel about and react to your project. You also need to know
how best to engage them in your project and how best to communicate with them. Key questions that
can help you understand your stakeholders are:
What financial or emotional interest do they have in the outcome of your work? Is it positive or
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, 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, what will win them around to support your project?