Stakeholder Dialogue for Motivated Managers
Stakeholder engagement should be one of the core competencies of any organisation today.
Gone are the days when you did not have a defined system and process in place – that is last century thinking.
The recent VW emissions scandal highlights the transient nature of stakeholders in today’s fast paced digitally world. They can turn from lovers and buyers of products and services to litigants in the blink of an eye.
But the publicity around the event highlights that thinking pertaining to stakeholder engagement is still the domain of sales or marketing departments. This is where organisations are getting caught out, especially in fast moving events.
A stakeholder is not by definition a customer (although all customers are stakeholders). Sales and marketing staff generally do not comprehend how broad the range of people is who have an interest in increasing their involvement with an organisation, or those who are influential recipients of its products and services.
They often don’t understand those who the central internal players in the organisation are; or those external to it, such as government departments or regulators. They also don’t get the impact these audiences have of financial performance, morale, and the wellbeing of the organisation.
This is why organisations with defined stakeholder management programs understand the risks that are before them, how to make high quality decisions and develop efficiencies in policymaking and program development.
They understand stakeholder management is no longer just a management discipline, but is one that falls squarely in the domain of the roles and responsibilities of the public relations function.
This function has been ‘brought up’ on understanding the vagaries of stakeholders.
But theory needs to be complemented with software that not only provides interaction, efficiencies and timeliness; but also captures, classifies and engages with audiences and incorporates tactics and programs. It also needs to ensure an understanding of the STAKOR process – a scale to measure stakeholder orientation based on dialogue.
The process has been rigorously tested on data from 616 Australian companies and provides the basic tool that allows organisations to measure the impact of initiatives.
This process, and Comms Matrix opens a new era in stakeholder management and engagement.