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What are strategies used to deal with silent and difficult stakeholders in a project?



What are strategies used to deal with silent and difficult stakeholders in a project?
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Informal Face to Face Communications on other subjects. It becomes more difficult to be difficult if someone is your friend.



Talk to them!

I'd say show genuine interest in their current projects or investments, or like Sante said just talk to them. Ask for their input directly. Sometimes it's the easiest solution that is the best.
Vincent Bettschart



To understand that there are not "difficult" stakeholders in a project. There are people with a perceived reality which is not equal to their reality wanted. So, you have to work on the perception, on the wish or in the gap between both.
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1 reply by Stéphane Parent
Aug 26, 2017 8:53 PM
Stéphane Parent
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Well said, Sergio!



You have got good advice here from Cindy, Sante, Vincent and Sergio.

My only addition is to combine what they have suggested:

Use informal face to face communication on other subjects to build a relation with them. Being their friend is a great platform to work from. Then also have informal face to face discussion with them about the project(s). Get them to describe what their concerns are. Listen actively to them and show that your are really putting an effort into understanding their point of view. (Notice that there is a difference between understanding someones view and agreeing. You do not have to agree with them, but you have to under stand them and let them know that you understand them.)

Then if needed you can go into formal meetings with these and other stakeholders as these informal discussions should have given you the understanding and relations needed get also the formal interaction to function.



Aug 26, 2017 6:32 AM
Replying to Sergio Luis Conte
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To understand that there are not "difficult" stakeholders in a project. There are people with a perceived reality which is not equal to their reality wanted. So, you have to work on the perception, on the wish or in the gap between both.
Well said, Sergio!



Face to face meetings and increased communication can be helpful.



As mentioned, sometimes a simple, and informal, f2f dialogue is all that is warranted - knock on the door, pick up the phone, meet for coffee or lunch



More and more communication ( face to face meetings ) with them in order to understand their perspective /goals . Like they say , there are never project/resource related problems , there are always ppl( emotional) /lack of communication ( of any means) that gives birth to what we call " Project problems " .



Amantle -

This might be a reflection on the culture of the company they work for. Passive aggressive behavior is sometimes a reaction to a culture which discourages transparency or providing open feedback.

As the others have indicated, one on one communication with active listening turned up a few notches might help to identify the cause of the behavior.

Kiron

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