Most of my clients come across the term "difficult stakeholders" when being interviewed by either recruitment agents or HR.
It seems as if all companies are staffed by difficult people who are unable to collaborate, have no shared goals, and have never worked in teams. Sometimes it really goes so wild that any sane professional would question that opportunity. Why should anyone join a team that will be a blocker for their success?
A lot of candidates get rejections based on their insufficient skills in dealing with such difficult people.
In this blog, I'm going to share a few strategies for answering that kind of question.
The first tip is to clarify what they mean by saying "difficult stakeholders" and who they are. Don't be afraid of asking a direct question. This will not only help you to structure your answer but also to get more information about the team and corporate culture.
In most cases, stakeholders are any people you will need to deal with when doing your job. They may be your clients, colleagues from finance, HR, sales department, or partners.
It is the first important milestone as it reveals what is in the company's backstage: corporate culture and relationships with clients or partners.
If their answer is about customers, you have a few messages to get through to them.
The important thing is to show that you understand how customer experience is vital, and its direct impact on the company's growth and success. Mention that you take responsibility for the customer's journey and put their happiness at the centre of everything you do. Provide examples from your experience when you have dealt with an extremely demanding client or an unhappy client.