We just saw how important stakeholders are to the project and how both primary and secondary stakeholders help project managers define project goals and outcomes. As a quick refresher, primary stakeholders are people who will benefit directly from the project's success, while secondary stakeholders are indirectly impacted by the project's success. Having all these different people involved on a project can get confusing, and that's where a stakeholder analysis comes in handy. This is a visual representation of all the stakeholders. It helps you avoid surprises, build necessary partnerships, and ensure you're involving the right people at the right time. When done well, your stakeholder analysis helps you see all the opportunities for success and the potential risks, it illustrates which stakeholders are taking on which responsibilities, and it can help you include the right people in important conversations, which is key to getting the support you need throughout the project. There are three key steps to kicking off a stakeholder analysis. First, make a list of all the stakeholders that the project impacts. Then determine the level of interest and influence for each stakeholder. And finally, assess their ability to participate, and find ways to involve them. In the second step, we talk about influence and interests. What do those terms mean here? Influence measures how much power a stakeholder has and how much the stakeholder's actions affect the project outcome. In our Office Green example, the Director of Product, who first initiated the project and oversees new products and services, has a huge amount of influence, while the vendor providing the greenery has less influence. Interest is pretty much what it sounds like: How much are the needs of the stakeholder affected by the project operations and outcomes? For example, Office Green's human resources department may not have as much interest in the product launch as a sales department does. The power grid is a super useful two-by-two grid used for conducting a stakeholder analysis. We use the power grid to assign each stakeholder's level of importance to the project, measuring their interest and influence. The position of the stakeholder on the grid usually determines their active role in the project. The higher the interest and influence, the more important the stakeholder is to the project's success. Without their support, it's unlikely that the project will successfully land. These people are our key stakeholders. Now that you have a better idea of each stakeholder's position on the team, you can plan how to best manage everyone. There are four different techniques you can use for managing stakeholders. The first group of stakeholders are the key players, or key stakeholders. You'll find these people in the top right corner of the grid. To best manage key stakeholders, you'll want to closely partner with them to reach the desired outcomes. Of course, not everyone's a key stakeholder, but each role, even the non-key stakeholder, gets a spot on the grid. You'll find stakeholders with higher influence but lower interest in the top left corner of the grid. To manage these stakeholders, you'll want to consult with them and meet their needs. Their opinions and input are important to the project. The Director of Product has high influence, but may not be vested into day-to-day activities, and therefore will have a lower interest. Stakeholders with lower influence but high interest are in the right bottom corner of the grid. For these stakeholders, you'll want to show consideration for them by keeping them up-to-date on the project. It's unlikely they'll need a say in what's going on, but keeping them informed is important. For example, the customer success team may have lower influence but high interest since they'll work directly with clients on the new product. Last up, we have stakeholders with low influence and low interest. You'll find these in the bottom left corner. They're the least important of the stakeholders, but this doesn't mean that they don't matter. It might just be that for this particular project, they aren't as integral. So for this project, you mainly want to monitor them, keeping them in the know. Creating a grid like this is an effective way to track who should be communicated with and when. This grid here is an example of how that might play out, depending on the project and the stakeholders. You may also want to create a steering committee made up of a high influence and high interest stakeholders. These people will be the most senior decision-making body on any project. They have the authority to make changes to budget and approve updates to timeline or scope. The project manager isn't a member of the committee, but they're responsible for bringing the right project information to the steering committee so that decisions can be quickly made. How you engage your stakeholders from this point on depends on your particular situation. There are different ways to involve each stakeholder, and you have to be strategic to get helpful and relevant input from the right people at the right time. You'll want to meet with some stakeholders every single day, and others you'll just send periodic updates to. Stakeholder buy-in is the process of involving these people in decision-making to hopefully reach a broader consensus on the organization's future. To get stakeholders to buy in on the project, you'll have to pay particular attention to your high-impact stakeholders and make sure they feel looped in. You'll want to explain to them how the project will help them achieve their goals, and you want to have their support later on if any issues come up. Here are some important things to keep in mind when communicating with stakeholders: If you have one main stakeholder, that stakeholder is likely to be highly influential and needs constant communication. But if you're on a larger project with numerous stakeholders, they won't be quite as involved in the day-to-day tasks. For stakeholders who need time to make decisions about the project, over-communicate early on. For example, hold frequent meetings and send daily end-of-day progress emails. This way, they have enough time to weigh the options and make decisions. Think about the level of project details each stakeholder needs. You don't want to spend time diving deep with stakeholders that just need a project summary. For example, the facilities team that delivers the product doesn't need daily updates on vendor pricing or website issues. On the flip side, do spend time updating key members that need frequent updates. The sales team will need to know pricing and availability changes, so a weekly check-in might make sense here. Great work. You just completed your own stakeholder analysis. Up next, we'll check out another tool, RACI charting. See you there.