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This article:
Why is stakeholder management important for project success?
What is stakeholder management?
1. Free Resources
2. Reduce and Uncover the Risk
3. Increase Success Perception
4. Easier Project Closure

Why is stakeholder management important for project success?
Because we need people to do the project work.
Stakeholder management is only one way to look at how we interact with people on projects in order to achieve a common goal. Better question: “Why is stakeholder engagement important?”
Let’s put that aside for now. I have a lot of information about stakeholder engagement in projects. Let’s just focus on what’s most commonly taught in project management courses and take a look at stakeholder management.
What is stakeholder management?
Every project has stakeholders, even the smallest ones. Stakeholder management is a key component of most project management methods. It helps you to understand the people who will be affected.
This information allows you to plan communication strategies and engagement strategies to avoid any problems, while adhering to the principles of stakeholder managing.
You’re familiar with the process: map influence and interest, then work to get any negative stakeholders to the quadrant by engaging communication and stressing the benefits of the project to them.
There are many other reasons to do stakeholder management. In his book, The Project Management Book Richard Newton outlines 4 additional benefits of stakeholder management. These are the benefits of stakeholder management.
1. Free Resources
“Proactive stakeholders” is one of my favorite books on project management. They provide a team of additional resources for free. He writes:
You can involve your stakeholders and delegate tasks to them.
You want to present to Marketing but don’t have the time. Ask your most engaged Marketing stakeholder for help. Need help setting up the project budget? Talk to Finance about your project budget.
Use their talents and interests to help you with the project. You can do anything from attending meetings to drafting communications and engaging with other stakeholders.
2. Reduce and Uncover the Risk
Newton states that “good stakeholder management reduces certain risks and makes others, which may otherwise be unnoticed transparent.”
You can reduce some risks by engaging your stakeholders more. For example, poor take-up when software is released for internal use.
You can also get help from your stakeholders to identify new risks. Talking to your stakeholders will help you discover more about what is happening that could have an impact on your project.
3. Increase Success Perception
Newton writes that “Regardless of the actual project outcome, stakeholders who were engaged and whose expectations were managed are more likely to perceive a project success than those who have not been involved.”
We all want our projects a success, right? It pays to get to know the right stakeholders at every stage of the project. This is especially important if it changes their perceptions about the project.
Projects don’t always deliver what they promise. This is why managing stakeholder engagements throughout the project is a way to help stakeholders adjust their expectations to the reality of delivery.
Next: The definitive guide to project success criteria
4. Easier Project Closure
Newton states that it eases the realization of benefits and the transition phase at project’s end when deliverables are handed to their owners.
This is true. It is much easier to give deliverables to someone who is familiar with them than to someone who is not.