Corporate Impact Management

Stakeholder Analysis


Once you have identified a generic list of stakeholders who are important to your business or that your business has a significant impact on you can break these general groups into more specific sub-groups. For example, ‘Communities’ may become a list of specific geographic communities in which you operate. You may also have different types of employees with different needs that should be considered separately. As your expanded list of stakeholders is likely to be quite extensive it is then usual to prioritise stakeholders to introduce more focus to your thinking. A basic matrix is often used help initially classify groups. This could be according to the scale of impact you might have on them versus the scale of impact they might have on you.

Stakeholder-groups can then classified as either:

  • Primary stakeholders,
  • Secondary Stakeholders,
  • Tertiary Stakeholders; or
  • Low-priority Stakeholders.

This classification is an indication of how critical a stakeholder-group is to the on-going operation of an organisation. The risk in this type of classification is that it can lead managers to focus only on relationships with an obvious and immediate impact. Whereas those stakeholder-groups damaged by a gradual corrosive effect might be repeatedly over-looked until the situation has reaches crisis point.

It is for this reason that it is important to ensure you understand the nature of your organisations relationships with a wide range of stakeholder-groups. Each of these relationships can be relatively easily characterised as a balance sheet of positive and negative impacts. It may help to consider these impacts under the headings of environmental, social, and economic interactions in a manner consistent with Triple-Bottom-Line (TBL) accounting.

Desk research and expert opinion will help you fill-out impact-based TBL balance sheets. However, you will usually best understand your stakeholder groups by talking, and most crucially listening, to them. Establishing and maintaining this kind of dialogue is what is known as Stakeholder Engagement.





Stakeholder Identification

>Stakeholder Analysis<

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder Relationship Management



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