(Part 2 – Managers and Owners)
In my last post (Project Management – Communication) I went over what a Stakeholder is and identified the three different types of stakeholders. Now let’s take a deeper look at Stakeholders who are your Managers and Owners. As I mentioned before it is very important to get this group working with you, not against you!
Find out what your Managers and Owners want to know and how they want to receive this information…
Early identification is key… You have just received an assignment to manage a project and it is important to act quickly to find out who your key players are (your key stakeholders). As soon as you gather that information you will want to establish communication with each as an individual.
I believe the best way to find out what this group of executives want is to just ask. I know it may sound too simple, or you may be thinking “is she out of her mind – I can’t just walk up to the owner and ask”. Believe me, in most cases your managers and owners will be very open to receiving your query and this step will pay off BIG in the long run.
I like to call or email to set up a meeting face to face. This allows an opportunity to give and receive feedback, ensuring you meet their requirements. Let them know you are managing this project for them and their department/company and you want to make sure they are kept informed. Find out what their ideal reporting time frame looks like. Some direct managers of your projects department may want more frequent updates while other managers that are less involved may want infrequent summary reviews.
How do you send out the information? Not only do you want to know the frequency your managers and owners want project information (or status) updates, you also want to find out what media they prefer you use to deliver it to them. Each one of these stakeholders is an individual and they will have very definite preferences as to how they receive updates.
They may request updates by one or several of these methods:
Via accesses to the project plan,
Charts and graphs,
Via a Web Portal or shared network
You will also want to find out if they would like to be invited to any or all project meetings, giving them the option to attend when they would like.
A simple spreadsheet is an easy way to keep track of updates. After you have determined how each of your individual managers and owners want project updates you can easily track it in a spreadsheet. This way you will ensure nothing slips through the cracks and everyone is happy.
Check back for my next post – We will discuss about communicating with Team Members working on your project…