Building relationships is imperative in the world of business, because when you are not on good terms with people, life is a nightmare. One of the most important business relationships is with the stakeholders. In a guest post for The Project Risk Coach, Colin Gautrey elaborates on how to engage the stakeholders without entirely annoying them in the process.
Cut It Out!
Everyone has their own problems and things in life that need their attention. When issues arise with the project and you must contact stakeholders, you must never be argumentative or have a holier-than-thou attitude. You should exude a constructive attitude that is always pleasant to work with. Additionally, you should always be prepared before you go to the stakeholders. Time is valuable, and you likely do not have many opportunities to communicate with the stakeholders. You do not want to be ill-prepared and have to come back later to answer simple questions.
Stakeholders do not need to be pelted with every little problem that may arise. They are busy people, and if they feel like you are creating more trouble for them, they may just reprioritize you, and not in a good way. Stakeholders additionally do not want to see sullen Steve with his negative attitude and pestering antics. Put on your plastic smile and really woo those stakeholders.
Providing clarity is mandatory when articulating to a stakeholder what you want. You do not want them to have to work hard to understand what it is that you want from them. Finally, you need to always follow through and embrace your responsibilities. You have a commitment to stakeholders, and you should honor that. You also have more power than you likely realize, so embrace your responsibilities. Perhaps you could have solved the problem yourself rather than pestering the stakeholders.
Gautrey shares that his personal pet peeve is “[a]sking for a minute and taking half an hour” when asking if the stakeholder has a minute to talk. This is outright disingenuous and will do worse than annoy people–it will create enemies out of them.
You can read the original post here: http://projectriskcoach.com/2016/07/25/guilty-of-annoying-your-stakeholders/