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How many stakeholders should I have in my stakeholder needs analysis?

There is no hard and fast rule for the number of stakeholders you should include in your stakeholders interests analysis. You should generally include all the individuals and organizations involved in or affected by the negotiation. At the same time, if a given category of stakeholders all likely have the same interests, then you are better off putting them together as one stakeholder group. An example would be if you had five Directors who all likely have the same interests, you should call the group of stakeholders, the “Board of Directors.” The number of stakeholders you should include will vary, depending on the negotiation. As a general matter, you will often find that you have at least three or four stakeholders. In particularly complex negotiations, you may have 8-12 stakeholders with genuinely different interests.

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