Evolution in Stakeholder Management
I can recall with vivid clarity my old classics teacher enunciating to the class that ‘There is nothing new under the sun.’ At that stage of our lives no one would have dared disagree with such an eloquent and confidently delivered statement from our erudite master.
The recent development of Comms Matrix initiated my rumination on the above assertion, and these days I can only half agree with it (insofar as the principles of consultation, engagement, and human behaviour hold true).
What is different today though is public and regulatory expectations related to consultation, engagement, and overall stakeholder management; the speed at which information moves; the number of channels not only available, but that must be used, to effectively manage public interactions; retrospective scrutiny and appraisal of publicly sensitive activity; and, the complexity that speed, fragmented audiences with different information requirements, and a news hungry media cycle bring to the mix.
The KPI in today’s stakeholder environment is reputation. Manage it well and you will enhance your standing across the board, pay no attention to it and you will go backwards relative to your competitors, or worse, destroy your organisation’s credibility entirely.
Simply put, using a spreadsheet and telephone to manage an organisation’s public interface is no longer feasible – or responsible.
Recognising the environment in which we exist is only the first part of the equation though. The nature of the workplace must also be considered.
Telecommuting, decentralisation, and international teams are all standard. Keeping everyone on message, in real-time, and pulling in the same direction sounds great on paper, but until recently has been nigh on impossible to achieve.
One could lay the ‘blame’ for the increased burden of complexity at the feet of technology (I would contend that it is actually the application of technology, mixed with our insatiable appetite for stimulus, that has amplified the complication of the operating environment), but that would be to blame the solution.
Realistically, without technology it is no longer possible to stay on top of our day-to-day requirements and manage them in the timely manner that is expected of us. The challenge in doing so is to have technology work for us.
That is what Comms Matrix does. It is cost-effective, intuitive, and when used in a disciplined manner (i.e. it becomes a part of your systems and processes) it is the ultimate enabler to enhance and build your reputation.