gears

Power-interest grid

Overview

As part of your stakeholder analysis, you can use a power-interest grid to visualise the different stakeholders and their interests in a project.

Also known as

The tool

The visualisation can help you to:

  • Identify stakeholder power, attitudes, and interests in a project.
  • Plan how to manager these.
Power on the y-axis and interest on the x-axis. 4 squares with high and low power and interest.

Why use it

When to use it

  • Stakeholder analysis.

How to use it

  1. List all the stakeholders in your project, no matter how little their power or interest is.
  2. Stakeholders can be identified by thinking about:

      • Who will be affected by your work?
      • Who has power or influence over your work?
      • Who has an interest in your work’s successful conclusion?
      • Who has an interest in seeing your work fail?

    Stakeholders may be organisations or individual people. However, you need to communicate with people, so you should identify the appropriate, named person(s) within each stakeholder organisation.

  3. Categorise your stakeholders based on the level of interest they have in your project and their decision-making power.
  4. Questions / prompts that might help you to understand and prioritise your stakeholders include:

      • What financial interests do the stakeholders have in the project?
      • What emotional interests do the stakeholders have in the project?
      • What reputational interests do the stakeholders have in the project?
      • What motivates your stakeholders most of all?
      • What information do they want from you?
      • What is the best way of communicating your message to them?
      • Who influences their opinions? Do those influencers also need to be included as stakeholders in their own right?
      • What will encourage stakeholders to support the project?
      • How will you manage stakeholder opposition?
      • Who else might be influenced by stakeholder opinions?
      • Should people who are influenced also be included as stakeholders in their own right?
     
  5. Using a power-interest grid, place your stakeholders in the appropriate quadrants.
  6. Use the completed grid to plan how best to manage your communications and stakeholder relations.

      • For stakeholders with low power and low interest, monitor with minimal effort.
      • For stakeholders with low power and high interest, keep informed constantly.
      • For stakeholders with high power and low interest, keep satisfied.
      • For stakeholders with high power and high interest: work closely with them.
     
  7. Monitor your stakeholders as the project progresses, moving them around the grid as their interest and power levels change.

Strengths

  • Plan the frequency and nature of communications with different groups and individuals.
  • Identify where it is most effective to expend energy on stakeholder relations.

Weaknesses

  • Pay more attention to some stakeholders to the detriment of others.
  • Fail to monitor stakeholders as the project progresses, and therefore not notice changes to levels of interest and power over time.

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Use in conjunction with

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Example(s)

Additional information