Six Essential Requirements of an Influencing Strategy

This is a guest post from Colin Gautrey, an author, trainer and executive coach who has specialized in the field of power and influence for over ten years. He combines solid research with deep personal experience in corporate life to offer his audiences critical yet simple insights into how to achieve results with greater influence. He is the creator of the Stakeholder Influencing Masterclass.

When it comes to becoming influential, you need to go through a number of steps.

Firstly, it will pay huge dividends if you get crystal clear on what you are aiming to influence. This includes moving from a hard goal to a soft goal and then backing it up with evidence criteria.

Six Essential Requirements for Influencing Strategy

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With that clear, it becomes much easier to identify who the key stakeholders are – those who have the power and interest to help or hinder your progress. Without doing this, most people seem to focus on the stakeholders who are nearest to them, easiest to access, or they have the best relationship with.

After a simple analysis exercise (considering relationship and agreement) it then comes down to developing an influencing strategy.

Guilty of Annoying Your Stakeholders

This is a guest post from Colin Gautrey, an author, trainer and executive coach who has specialized in the field of power and influence for over ten years. He combines solid research with deep personal experience in corporate life to offer his audiences critical yet simple insights into how to achieve results with greater influence. He is the creator of the Stakeholder Influencing Masterclass.

You are busy, and so are your stakeholders.

Getting them on board with your ideas, liaising with them to resolve issues, all takes time. It also helps a great deal if you get on well with them. Effective working relationships smooth over the inevitable problems and challenges that need to be dealt with.

Trouble is, it is far too easy to irritate them.

Guilty of Annoying Stakeholders

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You are in a hurry and time is of the essence. But, as you push things forward, try to make sure and avoid these common irritants.

Nine Awesome Benefits in the World of Stakeholder Management

John, a new project manager, has been failing to exploit and enhance the benefits of stakeholder management. Why?

Nine Awesome Benefits in the World of Stakeholder Management

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John has enough to do without adding superfluous stuff to his projects. He’s not been be convinced of the benefits.

If you are a Project Management Professional (PMP), you’ve likely studied Chapter 13 of the Project Management Body of Knowledge – Stakeholder Management, which was added in the Fifth Edition. Intellectually, you know about identifying and assessing stakeholders. You’ve learned how to develop a stakeholder management plan of when to engage stakeholders at in a project.

You understand the concepts. You have the book knowledge. But are you doing it?

I’m writing this article with one aim – I want to persuade you to improve your stakeholder influencing skills. Allow me to pull back the veil and share nine benefits of stakeholder management.

How to Turn Stakeholder Conflict on Its Head

Project managers encounter conflict regularly over schedules, project priorities, human resources, requirements, and technical opinions, to name a few. Individuals, groups, and organizations have different opinions, sometimes strong opinions. These conflicts may surface internally, as well as externally.

How to Turn Stakeholder Conflict on Its Head

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I remember a project that I managed where the organization wanted to create a customer service representative (CSR) position. Previously, administrative personnel handled the customer service in the remote locations. The introduction of the CSR would have greatly diminished the administrative personnel’s role and responsibilities.

I was asked to facilitate a series of meetings with key stakeholders. I remember the tension in the first meeting. The body language, the tone of voices, and the arguments all magnified the conflict. All project managers encounter conflicts like this one. How can keep peace while working through the opposing views?

8 Ways You Can Better Respond to Unrealistic Demands

This is a guest post from Colin Gautrey, an author, trainer and executive coach who has specialized in the field of power and influence for over ten years. He combines solid research with deep personal experience in corporate life to offer his audiences critical yet simple insights into how to achieve results with greater influence. He is the creator of the Stakeholder Influencing Masterclass.

We’ve all been there. You get a call (or more likely an email) requesting that you do something immediately or within an impossibly short space of time. Alternatively, they may be asking for something that you simply do not have the resources to be able to deliver. Many times, these requests feel more like orders — people demanding that you do things without giving a thought to what else you have on your plate.

Responding to Unrealistic Demands

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In these situations, it is all too easy to react emotionally — especially if the definition of “unrealistic” is stretched to the extreme. Your plans for the day are thrown off course, other people may be let down, and those people may be your loved ones. No surprise that you may feel angry or frustrated by the lack of consideration shown by the person making the demand.

If you’re struggling to respond to unrealistic demands:

10 Wonderful Ways to Keep Your Stakeholders Happy

I learned a lot about how to keep stakeholders happy from my father. In the Deep South, he taught me, “If Mama ain’t happy, nobody is happy!” Daddy had a simple formula for a healthy home with a wife and four children. He found out what made Mama happy and he made sure she had it. Mama valued faith, hope, and love…lots of love. That’s what we had.

10 Ways to Keep Your Stakeholders Happy

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I have applied these principles in my projects for years. I ask myself who are the key stakeholders, what they value or need, and what are their greatest concerns. I seek to harmonize the different opinions to deliver things in a manner that keeps them happy.

I’m not naive enough to think that everyone will always be at peace with me and the other stakeholders. However, good leadership and stakeholder engagement lead to greater contentment among the troops.

10 Doses of Happiness

In my more than 15 years of managing projects, I’ve found the following things help keep stakeholders happy:

What PMs Need to Know About Stakeholder Management

Colin Gautrey, an author, trainer and executive coach who has specialized in the field of power and influence for over ten years. He combines solid research with deep personal experience in corporate life to offer his audiences critical yet simple insights into how to achieve results with greater influence. He is the creator of the Stakeholder Influencing Masterclass

I first started out I worked for a branch of the intelligence services. Nothing terribly exciting, just a communications and IT specialist. Well okay, some of the time it was very exciting, but I can’t go into that.

What PMs Need to Know About Stakeholder Management

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Embedded in the culture was the concept of “need to know.” To minimize the risk that secrets would leak, you were only told things that were essential to perform your role. Nothing more, nothing less. For this to work, we all had to rely on someone at a more senior level making an accurate judgment about what we needed to know. Only they were allowed to see the bigger picture.

In fact, it was even a little risky asking questions lest suspicions were aroused. So generally people kept their heads down and did their job.

Why am I sharing this little snippet from my deep and distant past with you today?

Four Reasons Why You Struggle to Engage Stakeholders

Colin.PhotoThis is a guest post by Colin Gautrey from Learn to Influence. Colin is an author, trainer and executive coach who has specialized in the field of power and influence for over ten years. He combines solid research with deep personal experience in corporate life to offer his audiences critical yet simple insights into how to achieve results with greater influence.

Few things are possible in large or complex organisations without buy-in from stakeholders. To get that buy-in, you have to engage them.

Four Reasons Why You Struggle to Engage Stakeholders

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So, you diligently reach out to them to bring them up to speed, get their input and elicit their support for your initiative. Naturally, you are convinced that it is in their very best interests to pay engage with you, they have a great deal to gain from this exciting project.

And that is when the problems start.

My friend, Lee Ellis, shares how honor and accountability are linked together for great leadership. These leaders can inspire every team and organization to achieve a higher level of performance. The key is engaging with courage, commitment, and caring concern as opposed to motivation by fear, intimidation, and self-preservation.

Lee is the real deal. I heartily recommend that you preorder Lee’s book Engage with Honor on Amazon (release date of September 7, 2016).