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Topics: Change Management, Stakeholder Management
Stakeholder Management: "My feeling is... "

When encountering stakeholders from Operations in manufacturing with many years of experience in the company, people that have been working things out with "nothing" due to financial constraints...
How should a project be presented in order to prevent being responded that the "feeling" about the project is that it does not respond to the matter most relevant now?
Note that the feeling is backed with "thin air" only... just a feeling, but because of their position in the company, it may jeopardize the outcome of the presentation.

I would believe that hard numbers could help in demonstrating without a doubt that the project is viable and useful. However, would there be other approaches?

What has been your experience in dealing with stakeholders that are difficult to convince?
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Hi Bogdan,
To deal or manage stakeholders , you should have perfect stakeholder engagement plan and clear understanding of stakeholders needs and expectations and level of power and do not have any negative emotions for them .
Most important points are that to be stick with facts and communicate with them in professional way.
I am convinced that rational is important (financial statements, etc.) but people are conquered on the emotional side.
A feeling of inclusion and therefore engagement with the project. As part of stakeholder analysis, we can identify what the positive outcomes and results are pertinent to each stakeholder. If you have a certain stakeholder that is proving more difficult to engage, identifying what THEY need can allow you to tailor the presentation to reassure them.

This is not about hiding facts or smoke and mirrors, but managing an individual to understand what they are getting from the project and its benefits.
Simple (jejeje): the driver is you must demostrate to each person in the audience that she/he will be more rich with the solution than without the solution, where rich does not mean more money only. You are not presenting a proejct. You are presenting a solution to their problems.
Hi Bogdan,
I think stakeholder engagement should be an integral part of the entire project cycle, and not just when issues arise. Execution of the project is a team effort. And thus, viewpoints can be easily incorporated for both major and minor decisions. Having said that, presenting project results to the client should incorporate the viewpoints of different stakeholders.

Using a management system can prove to be useful, with enough time offered for review and feedback sessions. Such periods are in-built in Agile and other new work methodologies. Using a resource management software can help you create project timelines which has incorporated review and feedback sessions. This would give you enough time to have discussions, make changes and provide the best solution possible for the project.
Bogdan -

Seek first to understand, then to be understood.

This is why stakeholder analysis is so important as we need to understand where our stakeholders minds are at, what is important to them, and then (not with manipulation, but with influence) encourage them to see how our project will align with their needs.

And yes, it does help to have a solid business case to back this up in case someone yells "SHOW ME THE MONEY" :-)

Let's not forget that we, project managers, are also stakeholders to be managed. Are our expectations too grandiose for the organization? We may be gung ho and idealistic. We need to learn to temper our expectations. Keep pushing the envelope but be prepared to recognize impasses.

To paraphrase Charles de Gaulle, sometimes we lose the battle in order to not lose the war.

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