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8. Stakeholder Management and the Pivota... > Walmart, Battling for the Hearts and... - Pg. 131

Stakeholder Management and the Pivotal Role of the Sponsor 131 Structured Stakeholder Management The power, politics, and influence issues involved in managing projects across an enterprise can be looked at using a structured format. A stakeholder man- agement plan maps out a structured way to influence each player. The key word is "structured," as opposed to using a purely intuitive approach. Although stakeholders have always been managed in some form, structured stakeholder management allows for the comprehensive planning and staging of what needs to be done to influence the doers and opinion makers. Dealing with stakeholders in a customized, needs-based manner boosts the chances for smooth sailing in a project environment. Conversely, the lack of a systematic slant on handling both the obvious decision makers and the behind- the-scenes opinion makers is an open invitation to disaster: Sooner or later a disgruntled stakeholder will toss a curveball. At minimum, the fix for an un- expected situation entails backtracking, rework, and the management of grief.