7 Tips to Improve Internal Stakeholder Management

Posted by Maziar Adl
Maziar Adl
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Effectively managing stakeholders is essential for success as a product manager. This involves communicating and consulting with various stakeholders with different responsibilities in the product's development. Without the support of the internal teams, achieving product goals can be challenging, if not impossible. To overcome this challenge, product managers must have certain skills and develop a communication strategy to persuade stakeholders to contribute to the product goals and align with the company's vision.


Who Are Your Internal Stakeholders, and What Do They Need to Know?

Illustration: office stakeholdersYour project stakeholders have varying degrees of interaction in the product development process. Some stakeholders, including product teams, are directly involved in the project, while company executives have influence over product decisions and are affected by project outcomes. To effectively communicate with internal team members, the product manager must understand their needs and priorities. 


Company Executives

The company executives are focused on results; they need to know the expected outcome of each finished product and how the product strategy aligns with the long-term company vision.  


Engineering Teams

A product manager must communicate the product vision to the engineering teams so they can build a product that aligns with the strategy. A product manager will often work closely with a lead developer to help them design a product with the right features to ensure the correct product-market fit. 

At times it is also possible that the engineering teams provide ideas for new technology or capabilities that they know they can build and product managers are responsible for verifying the value of that proposal in the market. 


Sales and Customer Success Teams 

Sales teams are concerned with how to sell the product. They need to have a clear understanding of the product strategy and how the product benefits their customers.


Marketing Teams 

Marketing needs to know what makes the product unique and why customers should buy it. They are responsible for setting up a marketing strategy to create awareness and excitement about the product to maximize sales. 

They also need to know when the product will be generally available and part of that depends on product management collaboration with the project management team.


Form a Stakeholder Community

Illustration: gather around an ideaAs a product manager, you need to be aware of the key stakeholders within your organization. 

You need to know who they are so you know who to contact when to contact them, and the details they need to do their job effectively.

It is best to lay the groundwork before the project begins by meeting with them individually

to understand their roles. Also, consider holding collaborative meetings to further develop strong relationships between your product teams. 


Tips to Improve Stakeholder Management 

Effective stakeholder management requires regular engagement between product management and their teams. 


Create a Stakeholder Management Plan

Draw up a stakeholder management plan before the project begins. An effective plan will include the following:

  • List of project stakeholders
  • Each stakeholder's roles and responsibilities
  • Their level of interest in the project
  • The frequency and method of communication


Create a Stakeholder Map

A stakeholder map is a useful tool that allows a product manager to visually categorize internal stakeholders based on their level of interest and influence in the project. This four-quadrant matrix is also called a stakeholder matrix, power interest grid, or stakeholder chart.


Lead Your Product Teams

Illustration: win raceAs the product manager, your goal should be to guide the stakeholders toward creating value and achieving success. A common problem is product managers who prioritize pleasing stakeholders by agreeing to their requests or making compromises. Others attempt to persuade stakeholders to agree with their ideas and plans. 

As a product leader, you aim to inspire your teams to support you, not dictate to them. Your product teams offer a wealth of knowledge and experience, so show empathy and learn from what they say. Take an interest in their ideas and perspectives; this type of stakeholder engagement is more likely to garner respect and gather support for your ideas. 


Engage in Regular Communication

Develop a communication plan to stay connected with your teams; keeping your communication consistent and on a regular timeline can build strong relationships with your product teams. This is important as it helps to:

  • Promote alignment with the company vision and product goals
  • Encourage two-way communication to learn and inform
  • Identify any challenges or potential problems as and when they arise
  • Promote an environment of cross-collaboration 
  • Keep the development process moving forward to meet the specified timelines


Tailor Information to Your Audience

When sharing information with your internal stakeholders, it can be easy to overwhelm them with information they don't need. As a product manager, you must focus on what each team needs to know and offer information that is timely and relevant. 


Create Transparency

When product teams work independently with minimal interaction, information begins to isolate, resulting in information silos. This leads to production inefficiencies and a culture of disconnect within the organization. 

When working with multiple product teams, it is essential to share information and make it accessible using tools for product management. Provide a unified platform that serves as a single source of truth for your internal stakeholders and use roadmaps to inform them and keep them aligned with the process. 


What Is the Best Way to Communicate With Your Stakeholders?

Illustration: linked teamWhen considering stakeholder management, you must have the right tools to connect with your internal stakeholders. 


Web Conferencing

While in-person meetings are ideal when your teams work in the same physical space, Zoom and other web conferencing apps are great for connecting individuals and teams working remotely.



While email correspondence helps connect with your teams, it is not always ideal for sharing important information and documents. How can you be sure that everyone received the email or that your company executives are referencing the most updated documents? Using disparate tools presents challenges of version control and outdated information, so instead of using email to send important documents, use product roadmap management software to eliminate these problems.


Product Roadmaps

Product roadmaps provide a reliable method of delivering meaningful information toProduct Strategy Results your product teams. Roadmaps can be updated in real-time so everyone understands what is happening at any given time, allowing for dependencies to be managed more efficiently. It also provides the product manager better insight into the product development process and their progress in meeting the product goals. 

To be effective, especially when working with remote teams, product roadmap management software should be cloud-based and easily accessible to offer the most benefit. 


Product Roadmap Management Software Helps Improve Stakeholder Engagement and Communication

If you want to know how product roadmap management software can help you improve your internal stakeholder management, contact us for more information. Here at Gocious, our mission is to provide product managers with software that allows them to develop great products. Book a live demo to see the benefits of our software.


Topics: Product Management

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