If a stakeholder has unclear expectations about deliverables, timelines, and budgets, it can be challenging to create a project plan that ensures the stakeholder's satisfaction.


To deal with the problem, here are some solutions

  1. First, it's important to ask your stakeholders questions about what they want from you. You should ask them what their goals are and what they hope to achieve with your work together.
  2. Second, you should make sure that your stakeholder understands exactly what will be provided in return for their payment. You can do this by explaining how long it will take to complete the project or how much time will be required to finish each task.
  3. Third, it's important that you set clear deadlines for yourself so that you know when to get started on each part of your job. This will help prevent any delays or setbacks later down the line because there won't be any confusion about when something needs to be done or when something is due back at its destination point (which could lead to another issue entirely).
  4. Another way to avoid this problem is by setting up a project management system with your client. This way they can see exactly what stage their project is in at any given time, which will help them understand why certain things might take longer than expected or why other parts are ready sooner than they thought they would be.

Dialogue Examples

Example 1

Stakeholder: Hi [name], I have some more questions about the project.

Freelancer: Sure, what do you need?

Stakeholder: I'm not sure how long this is going to take to complete. Can you give me a ballpark?

Freelancer: Well, we'll need to sit down and discuss exactly what you want to be done so that I can give you a more accurate timeline. But typically when we're creating something in this style, it takes about two weeks from start to finish.

Stakeholder: Okay, but how much is this going to cost me?

Freelancer: That depends on how much time we spend on it—I don't like to put an exact number on it until we've talked about the scope of work.

Example 2

Stakeholder: Hey, I have a project that I need to be done by the end of the month.  

Freelancer: Okay, cool. What is it?

Stakeholder: It's a website that will let people know about my business and how to get in touch with me.  

Freelancer: Got it! What are you looking for in terms of what information goes on the site?  

Stakeholder: I want to be able to post pictures and descriptions of my products, as well as some information about how people can contact me and find out where I'm located. Also, I want to be able to update the site whenever there's something new happening with my business—if I get new inventory or if one of my items is sold out, I'll want to let people know right away so they don't miss out.

And finally, there needs to be a dropdown menu on every page so people can search through all my different product lines and find exactly what they're looking for.  

Freelancer: Great!

Example 3

Stakeholder: Hi, I have a project that I need help with.

Project Manager: What type of project is it?

Stakeholder: It's a website.

PM: Ok, how big is the site?

Stakeholder: It's pretty small, only about 10 pages.

PM: Ok, what kind of content should be on each page? Are they all static pages or do they need dynamic content?

Stakeholder: They're mostly static but we want to include some dynamic content as well. For example, we'd like to include a blog on the site and have it updated regularly. But other than that there isn't much else going on with this site.

PM: Ok, so how often do you want the blog updated? And what types of posts do you want to be included? Should it only be written by your company or would you like to include guest posts from other businesses too?

Stakeholder: We'd like to have one post per week, and we don't mind guest posts at all!