The term “stakeholder” is widely used in project management. Stakeholder is someone who affects a project or is affected by the outcomes of a project. They can be at any level such as external, internal, junior, senior and also they can be single individuals or entire organizations. Sometimes stakeholders can influence organizations or projects with their expectations. It is difficult to prioritize and manage them in wide and complex projects. Therefore some methods are used for classification of stakeholders according to their interests, power, requirements and expectations within a project. Salience model is recommended by the PMBOK Guide for identifying stakeholders.
The Salience Model
According to the PMBOK Guide, four models can be used for classifying stakeholders which are below,
1. Power/interest grid
2. Power/influence grid
3. Influence/impact grid
4. Salience model
The term salience is related with being noticable or important. The salience model was introduced by Mitchell, Agle, and Wood for classifying stakeholders within a project. According to this model there are three parameters are used to categorize stakeholders.
– Power : Power is the influence of the stakeholder on a project’s objective or outcome.
– Legitimacy : Legitimacy is the degree of authority the stakeholder has.
– Urgency :Urgency is the level to which stakeholder needs call for urgent response. It represents how time sensitive the needs of the stakeholder.
The Salience Model Diagram
A typical salience model diagram has three cirles for each parameters. The intersection of these three circles creates 4 regions marked on the diagram. Out of the intersection region, there are additional 3 regions. These total 7 regions represent different types of stakeholders on the project.
According to the Salience Model Diagram three classes of stakeholders can be defined:
Latent stakeholders are the stakeholders with only one of the 3 attributes, power, legitimacy and urgency. Latent stakeholders don’t give much attention to the project and usually treated with low salience. Dormant, Discretionary and Demanding stakeholders are classified as Latent stakeholders.
– Dormant : Stakeholders with h
igh power but low legitimacy and low urgency.
– Discretionary : Stakeholders with high legitimacy but low power and low urgency.
– Demanding : Stakeholders with high urgency but low legitimacy and low power.
Expectant stakeholders are the stakeholders with two one of the 3 attributes. Usually treated with moderate salience. Dominant, Dangerous, Dependent stakeholders are classified as Expectant stakeholders.
– Dorminant : Stakeholders with high power and high legitimacy but low urgency.
– Dangerous : Stakeholders with high power and high urgency but low legitimacy
– Dependent : Stakeholders with high urgency and high legitimacy but low power
Definitive stakeholders are the stakeholders with two all of the 3 attributes. They are treated with high salience. They can also be defined as core stakeholders. They have high power, high urgency, and high legitimacy.
There are four models recommended by the PMBOK Guide. However the Salience Model is quite helpful for defining and classifying stakeholders. The salience model depends on three parameters; power, legitimacy, and urgency. Understanding and using this model gives a point of view for stakeholder management.