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Can project team members be considered stakeholders?

The most common definition of a stakeholder is anyone who has a stake in the project, and anyone who's affected by the project success and failure. Doesn't that apply to the project team members? And if yes, shouldn't they be considered stakeholders as well?

I understand that classifying team members as stakeholders will mean that stakeholders will not immediately mean executives or upper management, but then again, the stakeholder definition should be altered in order to maintain the exclusivity to upper management. For example, the definition should be something like:

"A project stakeholder is a highly influential person whether from inside the company or outside the company that has a stake in the project and is affected, directly or indirectly, by the project success or failure".

What do others think?
asked 7 years ago by anonymous

1 Answer

In the general definition, team members are considered to be stakeholders, and that's what many books teach. But in real world project management, when was the last time you heard the word stakeholder referring to a team member? None, I suppose.

Although team members are technically a stakeholders, the term stakeholder, in real life, is never used to refer to a team member, but rather to members of upper management (internal stakeholders) and clients (external stakeholders).

Your definition of stakeholder is interesting, but again, the term stakeholder in its practical definition refers to important people only.
answered 7 years ago by FastProjectManager (10,100 points)

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