Download Stakeholder Relationship Worksheet

One CIO shares his method for tracking how to most effectively work with decision-making executives

Every stakeholder has a different communication style, priorities for IT and the business, and personal goals. Keeping track of these individuals' characteristics on a worksheet and using that information to form personal relationships can make or break a CIO and his IT initiatives.

When Michael Whitmer, CIO and Executive VP of Operations, Hudson Highland Group and a member of the CIO Executive Council, first came to the company, he wanted to immediately establish relationships with the top stakeholders across the company. The Relationship Worksheet keeps the intelligence gleaned from the meetings he has had with each in front of him. Having this information in a single, organized form allows him to easily refer to it for issues as simple, yet fundamental, as knowing which executives prefer to communicate solely by electronic means and which prefer to talk in person.

But it was the decision of what to include in the worksheet—particularly the question, "What can I do to make your job better?"—that got the best reaction and formed the personal foundation for many relationships. It has even saved one, Whitmer says: Instead of constantly being at odds over differing viewpoints and priorities with one stakeholder, this colleague has agreed to disagree on many matters because both know the other is approaching the situation with a good faith attempt to understand the other side.

Download the stakeholder relationship worksheet, or learn more about the Council at


This story, "Download Stakeholder Relationship Worksheet" was originally published by CIO Executive Council.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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