Solving real problems through Stakeholder management

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Surendra Saxena talks with Dorothy Mhlanga about stakeholder management, and how this most valuable technique can be used to solve real stakeholder problems.

Surendra is the Founder & CEO of Vellicate Technologies, leveraging his 25 years of corporate experience to enable organizations and individuals to solve complex business problems through consulting, training, mentoring and coaching.

What is your favourite business analysis technique, and what is it that you value about it?

My favourite technique is stakeholder management. Business analysts need to analyse the stakeholders and, in my consulting assignments, I have found stakeholder management to be incredibly useful. It can be used to help elicit the requirements as well as validate the requirements.

In which situations or at which point in the business analysis process do you typically focus on stakeholder management?

I start using the technique from an early stage of the discovery phase where I need to understand the context for the change.

Rather than start discussing the solution, I prefer to understand, among other things, what the “real” problem is, the users of the system and the business processes that the system needs to support. The same information can be effectively used to scope the initiative.

How is this technique particularly helpful/relevant for business and project stakeholders?

It is specifically useful in bringing all the stakeholders on the same page and agree on the scope. It also helps in agreeing on what is not in the scope. 

Why do you choose this technique over other techniques that can achieve similar results?

This is a simple technique that facilitates the collaboration with the stakeholders, validating their needs and reaching an agreement on the scope.

What advice do you have for other people using the stakeholder management technique? Do you have any tips to make stakeholder management spectacular?

Stakeholder management is not confined to any one phase of the project. It is a continuous process throughout the initiative.

The artefacts produced form the basis for managing the scope and stakeholder expectations. This technique should be followed by other techniques like use case modelling, process modelling, data flow diagrams, sequence charts, etc., to specify the functionality of the system.

‘Managing Real Problems Through Stakeholder Management’ with Surendra Saxena was first published in the Inter-View Report 2017

About Dorothy Mhlanga

Dorothy Mhlanga is a consultant at Saratoga specialising in business analysis, whose main areas of interest are system design and agile project delivery.

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