Managing Relationships for Project Success

Managing projects involves more than managing the triple constraint. Project stakeholders must also be managed. This course focuses on the key to managing stakeholders – creating an effective project relationship. Building the relationship involves designing an action plan, defining roles and responsibilities, planning for change, and communicating risks. Managing and sustaining relationships is often easier when things are going well – the challenge comes when things aren’t going well. Having the difficult conversation to overcome challenges or address issues can move the project forward. Your project may depend on it!

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Key Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate the principles of customer service when dealing with customers as stakeholders.
  • Define approaches for applying key principles of the project relationship life cycle with project stakeholders as customers, including:
    • Defining approaches for establishing effective relationships
    • Taking action to create those relationships
    • Managing the relationship in and outside of the project work environment
    • Sustaining relationships after the project
  • Apply a flexible change management process to projects
  • Communicate effectively with project stakeholders such as project sponsors and executive leadership.

Course Outline

The Project Relationship Life Cycle

  • Define customer service
  • Describe the key stages of a relationship life cycle
  • Define a relationship management life cycle

Creating the Relationship

  • Identify customer stakeholders as part of your stakeholder analysis
  • Define factors that support establishing a strong relationship
  • Discuss how using influence appropriately supports great customer service

Managing the Relationship

  • Clarify roles as part of defining a stakeholder and customer relationship
  • Set expectations with project stakeholders in order to manage customer service
  • Discuss change management as a key to managing stakeholders

Sustaining the Relationship

  • Involve project stakeholders in identifying and planning for project risks
  • Apply negotiation principles to managing changes on your projects
  • Discuss methods of working with project sponsors in difficult situations

Difficult Conversations

  • Recognize the need for a difficult conversation
  • Identify common reactions to difficult conversations
  • Name best practices for holding difficult conversations
  • Outline the steps to having successful difficult conversations
  • Prepare for and hold difficult conversations with increased success
  • Use difficult conversations as a tool for moving your project forward

Relationships Beyond the Project

  • Identify methods to maintain a relationship beyond the project
  • Describe the value of showing appreciation