and examine the needs and/or expectations of customers, colleagues, key
stakeholders and relevant others in the workplace
Stakeholders can be defined as all entities that
are impacted through a business running its operations and conducting other
activities related to its existence. The impact can be direct in the case of
the business’s customers and suppliers or indirect in the case of the
communities in which the business chooses to place its locations. Businesses
must consider the needs and expectations of its stakeholders, though it need
not consider them to be of equal importance. Certain stakeholders such as
owners and investors are more important than others.
Stakeholder is a
catch-all term that includes a broad range of disparate entities ranging from
individual people to large-scale public and private organizations. In general,
the business’s most prominent stakeholders include owners and investors, personnel,
customers, suppliers, creditors, host communities and the governments of those
Before a business
can consider the needs and expectations of its stakeholders in the course of
its planning, it must identify those stakeholders and sort them in their order
of importance to the business. One method to accomplish this is to list the
stakeholders and then determine the degree of their interest and influence in
the business. If stakeholders have a high degree of interest, the business
needs to communicate with them on a regular basis and keep them informed about
its activities. The business also needs to keep them placated.
-Stakeholder Needs and Expectations
Once the business
has identified its stakeholders and their importance to the business, it can
begin to plan based on their needs and expectations. Each stakeholder has
concerns that it expects to be met by the business. For example, the business’s
owners expect it to be profitable and to distribute that profit to them while
local and federal government agencies expect it to obey the law and pay its
taxes on time. The importance of each stakeholder to the business determines
the degree to which the business attempts to accommodate the stakeholder in the
course of planning its actions.
-Stakeholders and Business Planning
The impact of
stakeholder needs and expectations on businesses is inescapable and ubiquitous.
Businesses exist to meet the expectations of one specific stakeholder in the
sense that businesses are set up and operated to produce profit for their
owners and investors. Businesses also must consider the needs and expectations
of other stakeholders because of their ability to help and hinder their
operations. For example, a business should be considerate of its host
communities because that improves its reputation and strengthens its market
presence. On the other hand, if the business chooses to ignore its host
communities, that disregard becomes a black mark on its reputation and can
result in other sanctions if relations become bad enough. The only stakeholders
that businesses can ignore are the ones with little interest and influence on
the importance of knowing what customers, colleagues, key stakeholders and
relevant others in the workplace require
The benefits of knowing the
stakeholder’s expectations are listed below:
stakeholder’s expectations can be addressed better
effectiveness of the company can be improved, as the stakeholder identification
process will identify opportunities to improve
stakeholders gives the company the ability to establish long-term relationships
by continuously meeting their expectations
to reduce risk of any barriers that could inhibit the ability to maintain a
good long-term relationship
term relationships are built on trust, by meeting the stakeholder’s expectation
with open and honest collaborations
channels of communication ensure that any changes to the stakeholder’s
expectations are identified and adapted accordingly.
the stakeholder’s expectations assist management in making informed decisions
in line with the organisations goals/objectives.
organisations reputation is at stake if the expectations are not met of the
stakeholders, therefore safeguarding is required to ensure that reputation
remains intact. Risk management identifies any barriers that need addressing
before they have taken place.
can be customer lead, by understanding their changes in the market place this
forces organisation to adapt to suit the expectations, either diversification
ways of meeting the needs and/or the expectations of customers, colleagues, key
stakeholders and relevant others in the workplace within organisational
Ways to determine stakeholder’s
Informal: Initially registering informal discussion outcomes and recording them
so that this can be addressed according to expectations
Questionnaire: Anonymous questionnaires can give people a platform to give
honest feedback that can be addressed if there are any real pressing concerns
as a hole. Named questionnaires may lead
to less honest feedback as people may be afraid to be identified, depending on
They need to be clear to ensure that
the feedback will be relevant to the situation being investigated giving
individuals time to think about concerns and to give timely feedback that could
make a significant difference rather than instant feedback that may be unconstructive.
formal/informal: Structured and unstructured interviews give people instant
responses which can be recorded to get results back quicker on needs and
concerns to that management can strategies quicker.
– Focus group discussion: Team focus groups give an opportunity for all the members to
address any concerns or expectation as a team, so that everyone can work
together to find a solution to work together in a harmonious environment. The facilitator/line manager will ensure the
group remain on topic to identify resolutions quickly.
an opportunity to give feedback to the decision maker so that they can identify
if the plan is on target or any adjustments need to be made. This also will
reduce the risk of ‘not delivering on time in budget’ to maintain the integrity
of the team/business.
– Suggestion box: an anonymous platform to give honest suggestions/feedback to management.
This helps management with decision making to include the suggestions of the
employees to make them feel heard, as notable members of the organisation.
– Observation: part
of the performance management process; the mood of the individual can be
identified and the quality of the work.
Monitoring through observations i.e.
employees to ensure that they are managing their workload, tasks. Observations
inform management when to intervene if they find that there are concerns in the
performance of the employees i.e. not working to full capacity, demotivated
Observing customers purchasing
behaviour, to identify when to intervene and re-establish contact, to address
any concerns and expectations.
2.2 Explain ways
of checking that the and/or expectations of other have been met
Way of checking
expectations have been met include:
– Active listening: Meetings to actively listen to
feedback from stakeholders to ensure that expectations have been recorded so
that actions can be followed up accordingly
Acting on feedback that has
been given so that the stakeholder feels that the have been heard and their
opinion matter and they are a valued member of the team
– Effective Communication:
SOP system – processes and procedures
are put in place to ensure effective communicate with stakeholders and to
comply with regulations.
Suppliers – purchase orders forms are
given to ensure there is no misunderstanding on the ordering process
Customers – complete a customer order
form to ensure that all the relevant contact details and quantities i.e.
shipping and billing address so that goods can be shipped to the correct
Employees – Annual reviews
allows for effective communication to take place where new goals and objectives
are set for each employee and this is an opportunity to recognise excellent
work that has taken place as well as what training requirement are needed to
perform future tasks.
of the performance management system, reports give feedback on performances of
each department and indicate where the gaps are so that these can be addressed
so that improvement strategies can be put in place to improve the performance.
Reporting picks up positive and negative issues on business activities that
need addressing or acknowledgement.
Reporting also helps management in future planning, drawing
from past experiences so that this can be either duplicated in future
activities or improved.
-Timely delivery: ensures timely delivery to meet
expectations i.e. employees expect to be paid on time and customers expect to
receive goods in time and suppliers expect to be paid on time to maintain the
reputation and integrity of the organisation.
ways of dealing with difficult situations where it is not possible to meet the
needs and/or expectations of others within organisational guidelines and
Effective communication will help to
overcome demanding situations where it is not possible to meet the needs or
expectations of the stakeholders due to constraints. These include:
– By explaining why, the needs and
expectations cannot be met politely and courteously to the stakeholder
– Being open, honest and transparent
establishes trust and develops long term relationships. Demanding situations
can be tricky but being honest, everyone is informed, and this ensures that the
reputation is intact.
– Concerns raised by stakeholders must
be handled with careful and empathic listening to ensure their concerns have
been heard and addressed appropriately.
– Compromising allows the supply chain
to meet an agreement that is best for both parties. If the expectations cannot
be met this is helpful to negotiate updated terms by means of mediation or
compromising to that the new expectations is realistic to both parties.
– By receiving reports this can
identify issues in performance manage that needs addressing. This allows for discussion on why the expectations
have not been met and how the performance can influence the outcomes.
– Ensuring that any issues are brought
to the attention of management in a timely manner to address this as quickly as
possible to so that the reputation of the organisation can remain intact.