With the increasing complexity of projects and the organizations they support, stakeholder management is critical to the success of projects. But every stakeholder is not the same. Some are supportive and understanding and some look at you like they are Van Helsing and you are Count Dracula (i.e. “stake holders”)
The reality of projects today is that most of them require coordination across many organizational areas and therefore interaction with many different stakeholders. The key is to manage the relationship and expectations with the stakeholders throughout the project.
Early on it is a good idea to get the stakeholder landscape and then meet with each one to understand their key points of interaction, expectations and agendas. I find that “stakeholders” become “stake holders” when there are surprises. Therefore, as the project is being executed make you you are including them in regular communications and managing their expectations around its progress and any challenges.