The success or failure of a project can depend on efficient stakeholder management. Stakeholders include the project team getting work done, the project team's managers providing resources and directions to the team, and anyone and everyone who could be impacted by the outcome of the project — whether they are the client, or a different team whose work depends on successful project completion. If these people aren't in constant communication, the entire project could be delayed weeks or even months.

A project manager is the glue bringing all the different stakeholders together. Their greatest challenge is efficiently juggling all these people without the power to "lay down the law". They manage everything laterally, and that means they're asking instead of telling. Sometimes projects go off without a hitch. Sometimes it seems different stakeholders live to make project managers go crazy.

We want to have an open discussion with the project manager community (and anyone else who is interested) around the challenges about working with project stakeholders, and some best practices for managing those relationships.

This Friday, March 13th, two members of the Wrike team will be hosting #PMChat, run by Robert Kelly. Our two hosts bring a wealth of experience working with various project stakeholders: Errette Dunn, Productivity Coach at Wrike (previously with Airbus and Toyota) and Tom Treanor, Director of Content Marketing at Wrike (previously in project management at HP and PwC Consulting).

Accredited and accidental project managers from around the world join in the #PMChat every week, so take this opportunity to get ideas and feedback from your community. Jump in to talk about challenges, successes, and suggestions related to project stakeholder management.

How to participate in our #PMChat:

Join our #PMChat on Twitter on Friday, March 13, 2015 at 9AM PST (12PM EST). 

Never participated in a Twitter chat before? It's easy — and you don't have to sign up in advance.

Enter #PMChat on TweetChat, and authorize the app for your Twitter handle. This tool will help you follow along with live conversation in a chatroom format. You can easily respond to our questions, retweet others' answers, and talk to your fellow PMchat-ers.

Every time we ask a question, we'll start with Q1), Q2), etc. That's your cue to share your thoughts.

Questions we plan to cover and learn about during our #PMChat (subject to change):

Q1) Who are the different stakeholders that project managers need to keep on the radar during a project?

Questions about project team members: Q2) How do you motivate or lead project team members who don’t report to you? Q3) How do you get the managers of those people to provide enough of their time for your project?

Questions about project sponsors: Q4) How do you keep sponsors championing the project vs. being passive observers? Q5) If you have multiple sponsors, how do you avoid scope creep?

Questions about people impacted by the project: Q6) How do we identify those people who might be impacted by the project? Q7) How do you proactively identify potential issues that will come up and diffuse them early? Q8) What are the best ways to communicate with these people regularly during the project? Q9) What other stakeholder issues do you see in projects? How do you address those?

When you're sharing, start your response with A1), A2), etc. to match our question. If you use Tweetchat, it will automatically add #PMChat to the end of your response so that it shows up in the #PMChat feed. Otherwise, if you're adding a tool like Hootsuite, Tweetdeck or the Twitter app, add the #PMChat hashtag on your own, so everyone can see your response.

Check out this blog post for more general information and an example of how to use Twitter chats.

Looking forward to talking with you on 3/13!

Image credits: Designed by Freepik