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Stuck in the Middle: Mastering Stakeholder Management

Emily Tate
February 07, 2020

Stuck in the Middle: Mastering Stakeholder Management

Product teams sit in the middle of business, user experience, and technology. Each area has different needs in order to reach their goals, and feels that their asks should be considered the most important. As a result, teams are often put in a difficult situation of balancing the needs of many stakeholders, all while moving their product forward for their customers. This talk will cover important points of stakeholder management, and common mistakes to avoid.

Emily Tate

February 07, 2020

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  1. “We humans are far more focused on threat than we

    are the potential of positive outcomes” Julia Whitney
 Whitney and Associates
  2. Leadership Sales Team Marketing Team Development Team UX Team Legal,

    Security & Regulatory Some Dude on Twitter @thedailyem
  3. • Tell me what you know about this project. •

    What are your goals for this project? • What does success look like to you? • What are your biggest fears about this project? • How would you like to be kept updated? • What problems are you the right person to solve? Stakeholder Interviews @thedailyem
  4. Core Team High-Touch Low-Touch • Goals Alignment • Contributor/user of

    tracking tools • Daily standup • Weekly retros • Regular ad hoc conversations • Goals Alignment • Access to tracking tools • Weekly update meeting • Weekly update email • Frequent ad hoc conversations • Goals Alignment • Weekly update email • Weekly email • Ad hoc conversations when they have questions Sample Communication Plan @thedailyem
  5. Who: Core team, key stakeholders, naysayers When: At the beginning

    of any large effort, or when you sense misalignment How long: 1-2 hours Goals Alignment Workshop @thedailyem
  6. What is Actually Happening: Week 1: ✅ Week 2: ✅

    Week 3: ✅ Week 4: ✅ Week 5: ✅ Week 6: ✅ Week 1: ✅ Week 2: ⚠ Week 3: ⁉ Week 4: Week 5: Week 6: My Scorecard Shows: @thedailyem
  7. Use Your 5 Whys Why are they angry? We scheduled

    a meeting without telling them They had been designated primary contact When someone asked and they didn’t know, they looked like they weren’t doing their job It hurt their credibility @thedailyem
  8. Fight the “Swoop and Poop” • Communicate early and often

    • Data-driven decisions • Own your product • Return to goals @thedailyem
  9. Strong stakeholder management can be the difference between a good

    product manager and a great one. @thedailyem
  10. Emily Tate Chief of Staff Mind the Product Twitter: @thedailyem

    LinkedIn: /thedailyem bit.ly/Engage2020