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An Introduction to Managing People and Stakeholders in Projects

Project managers often overlook people management in favour of technical skills, so this practical two-day course ensures that you get results through your people by focusing on strengthening your interpersonal skill sets.

Creating an effective project organisation structure, team building, influencing and persuading key stakeholders, delivering difficult messages and minimising conflict are some of the key topics explored in this course.

The course will help you to develop your people management skills, both for people working full time on your projects and people who have other responsibilities and demands on their time. You will be able to gain a stronger commitment from the project team and achieve the performance needed to deliver projects successfully.

Note: An optional third day is available (‘Influencing Others – A Practical Workshop to Achieve Impact without Authority’) that will use a detailed behavioural assessment, case studies and ‘hands-on’ interactive exercises to test and improve delegates’ influencing skills.

Target Audience:

Suitable particularly to new project managers who need to use their people skills to establish a project team and manage a range of interpersonal challenges with stakeholders, within and external to the core project team. Those who are looking for technical processes and tools should consider 'An Introduction to Effective Project Management' for an awareness of the underpinning project management methods.
If you are in a project support role then you may wish to consider 'Providing Administrative Support for Projects.

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Learning Objectives

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Establish clear roles and responsibilities in a typical project team
  • Build and lead a skilled project team able to deliver against expectations in full
  • Maximise the contribution, commitment and motivation of each individual in the project
  • Improve your management of project team members, teams and stakeholders
  • Appreciate how stakeholder management is undertaken throughout the project lifecycle
  • Influence senior stakeholders more effectively
  • Get agreement to either a ‘Waterfall’ or ‘Agile’ approach to your project
  • Get things achieved despite having little or no direct authority
  • Provide constructive feedback even when the messages are difficult or sensitive
  • Minimise and manage conflict situations positively

Course Content

Effective Project Governance

  • The importance of a suitably structured project organisation
  • Establishing clear roles and responsibilities across the project
  • Quick decisionmaking using the correct levels of authority

Building the Project Team

  • The difference between a project team and a work team 
  • Mirroring the characteristics of high performing project teams
  • Stages of project team development
  • Using Belbin™ team roles to balance your team appropriately

Leading the Project Team

  • What is project team leadership and why should anyone follow you?
  • Using situational leadership styles to maximise output and personal development
  • Focusing your project team and maintaining motivation when the going gets tough 

Stakeholders – who are they?

  • The key stakeholders identified
  • Project team stakeholders – the most common roles explained
  • Agreeing whether the project approach will be either ‘Waterfall’ or ‘Agile’
  • Getting approval to roles and responsibilities

Engaging and Persuading Stakeholders

  • Understand when to engage stakeholders during the project life cycle
  • Stakeholder mapping and the essential role it plays in relationship building
  • The differences between influence, persuasion and negotiation
  • Understand your own influencing style
  • Getting stakeholders to deliver on time
  • Power levers – how they can significantly strengthen your hand
  • Other people’s behaviour – recognising it and adapting your style

Persuading your Senior Stakeholders when you have limited Authority

  • Establish yourself - gaining credibility and power
  • The two sides to being assertive with stakeholders
  • Key tips for using influence and persuasion with your senior stakeholders

How to Communicate Effectively within a Difficult Environment

  • How to handle emotion
  • Getting people to do what you require of them
  • Using different people to help you get results from others
  • Using a structured persuasion process

Minimise and Manage Conflict Situations

  • The importance of seeing things from the other person’s point of view
  • Recognise your conflict handling style
  • Selecting the most effective approach for each conflict situation

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