Ok, perhaps I should say that differently. The concept of a stakeholder is problematic.
Technically, a stakeholder is anyone who impacts or is impacted by an organization’s actions or products. That definition of a stakeholder isn’t very helpful if you’re trying to differentiate between customers, users, and those internal folks who have an interest in your product. To keep things straight, I apply the term stakeholders to that third group specifically. Stakeholders play a big part in internal products, so you can’t ignore your stakeholders and you can’t focus solely on them either.
Join Kent McDonald in this Ask Me Anything session focused on working with stakeholders. Kent has spent more years than he cares to admit working with all different types of stakeholders, and now he’d like to answer your questions and (hopefully) help you avoid some of the mistakes he’s made along the way.
So bring your questions about working with stakeholders and Kent will answer them. Anything he doesn’t get a chance to answer during the session he’ll follow up with answers after the session.
Some questions we will most certainly address:
- How to know if you’re dealing with a customer, a user, or stakeholder and why that’s important
- How to identify the stakeholders you need to deal with and how you should deal with them
- How to keep your stakeholders up to speed on what you’re up to.
What is the difference between customers, users, and stakeholders?
When you develop products, you have to interact with customers, users, and stakeholders. To be effective, you need to understand the different perspectives.
The context diagram shows how your product interacts with outside people, organizations, and/or systems. The context diagram helps you to identify the interfaces you need to account for, helps you to identify scope, identify potential stakeholders, and build a better understanding of the context in which you are working.
You can use a stakeholder map to understand who your stakeholders are, understand their key characteristics, and determine how to engage your stakeholders.
Parking Lot Diagram
A parking lot diagram is a way to visually communicate status of work on a product in the context of major blocks of functionality intended to deliver a specific outcome. The parking lot diagram uses boxes to indicate the relationship between the different levels in a product functionality hierarchy, and uses color to indicate the status of significant functionality.