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Aligning Stakeholder Engagement Means More Than You Realize

The engagement of stakeholders is absolutely essential for project management to be successful. Sometimes a company is explicitly clear about terming their stakeholder engagement, but it can actually unwittingly go by many names. In a post for Voices on Project Management, Lynda Bourne provides a few examples of stakeholder engagement by another name.

What’s in a Name?

Stakeholders often have expectations regarding the behavior and responsibilities of the organizations they represent: corporate social responsibility (CSR). Social responsibilities are unique to each organization because of the varied people and products involved.

Furthermore, “sustainability” in the context of an organization involves more than the environment and reaches out to include social, cultural, and economic. Stakeholders seek to have long-term consumer and employee value that creates sustainability for the organization.

“Triple bottom line” (TBL) is a term used in accounting that encompasses social, environmental, and financial. Another term for these three parts is the three Ps, or: people, planet, and profit. This framework is a form of sustainability.

The project manager is often the link between the project and the stakeholders, so they need to be extra mindful if their organization is utilizing any one of these terms. Stakeholders need to be engaged and included no matter what title the organization may give them. Organizations that utilize CSR, sustainability, and TBL often have an advantageous reputation, which helps for them to attract and retain talented employees, users, or clients. They also have better maintenance of employee morale and are looked upon more favorably by owners, donors, sponsors, and the financial community in general. These organizations additionally have stronger relationships with other companies within the same industry or even the government.

Project managers are not responsible for creating these corporate policies, but they can effectively endorse them. Stakeholder engagement is essential in the larger picture of success. You can read the original post here: http://www.projectmanagement.com/blog/Voices-on-Project-Management/16681/

About Danielle Koehler

Danielle is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. She has degrees in English and human resource management from Shippensburg University.

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