Stakeholders are the people who have a stake in your company’s activities. They can be investors, customers, employees, or members of the general public. It’s important to realise that stakeholders can make or break your business, so keeping them on board is vital. To do this, you need to understand their needs and wants. You also need to find new ways for them to help you reach your goals. Want to know more? Keep reading!
What Is A Stakeholder?
A stakeholder is someone who has some kind of vested interest in your company’s activities. This ‘interest’ can take many forms. A stakeholder could simply be a shareholder, and what makes them happy is to see the share value of an organisation increase. Employees obviously want the company to succeed as their job depends on this, bu they will also be interested in working conditions, job security and wages. Customers on the other hand may want more than just a good product or service. They may ‘demand’ innovation as well as lower prices.
Stakeholders are important to your company because they can make or break it – and they need to feel like their voice is being heard.
Keeping Your Stakeholders Happy
One way for you to do this is by understanding their needs and wants. What motivates them? What are their goals and objectives? How do they want to help you grow?
Another way to keep them happy is to find new ways for them to help you reach your goals. People often love being asked for their opinion. It makes them feel valued, and that can be important.
For example, if one stakeholder has a strong social media presence and lots of followers, why not ask that person to share content from your company on their social media channels? This would be a mutually beneficial relationship because the stakeholder will like your company that bit more (after all, you’ve made them feel special and they’re helping it grow!) and your company would benefit from the work the stakeholder is doing.
Here are some other ways of keeping your stakeholders on board, while at the same time engaging them and encouraging them to find new ways of helping the business reach its goals.
Some different strategies:
- Provide updates on the progress of your company and what’s coming next.
- Make sure they feel like they’re part of something big.
- Make it easy for them to offer feedback on your product or service.
- Create a channel that lets stakeholders send you anonymous feedback, this being especially useful when eliciting comments from staff.
- Ask for their opinion on things that directly affect their stake in your business.
Engage Your Stakeholders In The Process
One of the best ways to keep stakeholders on board is to engage them in the decision-making process.
Your stakeholders want to be a part of your business’s success. They want to know what you do and how you do it. Try to put your stakeholders’ needs first (or at least near the front of the queue), and make sure they feel invested in your company’s growth.
Don’t forget that you need their help as well as their input. Ask them how they can help make your business better – this will introduce new ideas from a totally different angle. Each of them being from someone genuinely interested in ensuring your company’s success.
Another great way to engage with stakeholders is by making a public commitment to a cause that has meaning for them. This could be a charity, climate change or ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) issues. Your involvement can give them a sense of ownership and create a shared identity with your business.
Lastly, if someone offers an idea but is hesitant about sharing it, send them an email or call and ask what they think about the idea. When you ask for feedback, they’ll feel more comfortable voicing their opinion and will feel more connected with your business as a result.
Finding New Approaches For Keeping Your Stakeholders On Board
Another proven way of keeping your stakeholders on board is to find new approaches and ways for them to help you. Even if they don’t have the time or expertise necessary themselves, they might know someone who does.
Think about all the different people who are involved in your business. The variation is so vast, including as it will customers, investors, employees, and members of the general public, that there is bound to be someone with a new view or idea that could prove really useful to the business.
For example, if you’re looking for some new leads on LinkedIn, ask one of your investors or employees to talk about your business. They may even be able sell your product or services better than you can, at least in some circumstances.
If we want our stakeholders to be successful and stay invested in our company, we need to involve them as much as possible. The more we ask for their help and ideas, the more motivated they will be to see us succeed – and the more likely they will stay invested in our company.
It all sounds very simple, but as ever, things are never as easy as they seem, and often businesses need some help. This is where Prendo comes in. They offer a different way of helping organizations reach out to and engage with their stakeholders, their ‘secret’ being their use of simulations. For more information please see https://www.prendo.com/leadership-challenges/engaging-stakeholders/
These allow the participants to see how their approach to the problem is likely to work out in the real world, but without the danger of damaging any relationships. The experience gained in this training can be invaluable and could make a huge difference to any business.
If you are interested in even more business-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.