Engaging stakeholders is valuable to your organization for a few reasons:
1. It helps you stay relevant and connected
Stakeholders no longer want to be “consulted”; they want to be engaged meaningfully in setting new directions and shaping organizations. This means that organizations need to do things differently to stay relevant and connected to their memberships, staff and stakeholders. They need to really engage and interact in a two-way dialogue with their constituents or else risk becoming last week’s meme. (See our video blog about the difference between consultation and collaboration.)
2. It gives you access to a diversity of ideas and increases your innovation potential
Diversity is the key to innovation. The more different types of people you actively engage in conversation, the more likely you are to gain a complete picture of any dilemma. And, the more likely it is that you will find that golden idea that takes your organization to new heights. Of course, it matters HOW you engage them. You need the structure and process that allows large, diverse groups to get to results, collaboratively.
3. It can provide you with buy-in to your initiative
People do not resist change. They resist being changed. By engaging your membership, staff or stakeholders in co-creating a new direction or solution, you end up with very little resistance to change. In fact, you might even have people step forward to help!
If you want advice on how to meaningfully engaging your stakeholders, send us an e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org
In the meantime, check out this video that shows what it looks like to engage your stakeholders in open collaboration.