Mendelow Stakeholder Matrix

The Mendelow stakeholder matrix is a framework used to analyze stakeholder attitudes and expectations and their potential impact on business decisions.

Understanding the Mendelow stakeholder matrix

The Mendelow stakeholder matrix was created in 1991 by Aubrey L. Mendelow as a relatively simple way to manage stakeholders during a project.

The ability to manage stakeholders is critical to the project’s success.

However, any project manager will know how complicated it can be to juggle the various competing interests of stakeholders simultaneously.

Since these interests are often contradictory, they can cause conflict, disharmony, and a loss of productivity.

To balance the conflicting priorities of stakeholders, the Mendelow matrix analyzes their attitudes across two key variables:


Defined as the ability of a stakeholder to coerce, induce, or persuade another group to take a specific course of action.


Or the likelihood that a stakeholder will be motivated to exert their power to have their needs met.

Interest can sometimes be more difficult to quantify and is context specific.

The four categories of Mendelow’s matrix

The Mendelow matrix is divided into four categories with stakeholder interest (low to high) on the x-axis and stakeholder power (low to high) on the y-axis.

Let’s take a look at the four combinations below:

Low priority (low power, low interest)

These are stakeholders with the lowest ability to impact a project and, in any case, are not interested in doing so.

There is less of a need to inform or engage with this group but it should be monitored in case circumstances change.

These stakeholders are usually local groups, suppliers, or members of the community.

Keep informed (low power, high interest)

It is important to keep these stakeholders in the loop to ensure there are no concerns that could become major problems later.

While this group has low power, a high level of interest means they may lobby a more powerful group to have their needs met.

Employees often fall into this category.

Keep satisfied (high power, low interest)

Despite their low interest, these stakeholders need to be kept informed/satisfied for various reasons.

They tend to be powerful organizations such as banks, government, law enforcement, insurance companies, and other regulatory bodies.

Key players (high power, high interest)

These are stakeholders that need to be managed closely to ensure they are fully engaged with the project.

They comprise directors, upper management, and investors who are actively involved in decision-making and have the power to terminate a project if dissatisfied.

Mendelow matrix best practices

With the various stakeholder groups identified, project managers can devise tailored plans to better manage communications while endeavoring to keep each satisfied.

Remember that stakeholders may shift between quadrants without warning – particularly if specific needs or conditions are not met.

A project that fails to meet strict environmental standards, for example, may see the government move from the “Keep satisfied” (high power, low interest) to the “Key player” (high power, high interest) if it intends to impose sanctions.

Key takeaways

  • The Mendelow stakeholder matrix is a framework used to analyze stakeholder attitudes and expectations and their potential impact on business decisions.
  • The Mendelow stakeholder matrix analyzes attitudes across two key variables: power and interest. Power is the ability of a stakeholder to influence the actions of others, while interest is defined as the likelihood of using that power.
  • Mendelow’s matrix illustrates varying degrees of power and interest in quadrants that represent different stakeholder groups. These groups are low priority, keep informed, keep satisfied, and key players.

Connected Business Matrices

SFA Matrix

The SFA matrix is a framework that helps businesses evaluate strategic options. Gerry Johnson and Kevan Scholes created the SFA matrix to help businesses evaluate their strategic options before committing. Evaluation of strategic opportunities is performed by considering three criteria that make up the SFA acronym: suitability, feasibility, and acceptability.

Hoshin Kanri X-Matrix

The Hoshin Kanri X-Matrix is a strategy deployment tool that helps businesses achieve goals over the short and long term. Hoshin Kanri is a method that seeks to bridge the gap between strategy and execution. Strategic objectives are clearly defined and the goals of every level of the organization are aligned. With everyone moving in the same direction, process coordination and decision-making ability are strengthened.

Kepner-Tregoe Matrix

The Kepner-Tregoe matrix was created by management consultants Charles H. Kepner and Benjamin B. Tregoe in the 1960s, developed to help businesses navigate the decisions they make daily, the Kepner-Tregoe matrix is a root cause analysis used in organizational decision making.

Eisenhower Matrix

The Eisenhower Matrix is a tool that helps businesses prioritize tasks based on their urgency and importance, named after Dwight D. Eisenhower, President of the United States from 1953 to 1961, the matrix helps businesses and individuals differentiate between the urgent and important to prevent urgent things (seemingly useful in the short-term) cannibalize important things (critical for long-term success).

Action Priority Matrix

An action priority matrix is a productivity tool that helps businesses prioritize certain tasks and objectives over others. The matrix itself is represented by four quadrants on a typical cartesian graph. These quadrants are plotted against the effort required to complete a task (x-axis) and the impact (benefit) that each task brings once completed (y-axis). This matrix helps assess what projects need to be undertaken and the potential impact for each.

TOWS Matrix

The TOWS Matrix is an acronym for Threats, Opportunities, Weaknesses, and Strengths. The matrix is a variation on the SWOT Analysis, and it seeks to address criticisms of the SWOT Analysis regarding its inability to show relationships between the various categories.

GE McKinsey Matrix

The GE McKinsey Matrix was developed in the 1970s after General Electric asked its consultant McKinsey to develop a portfolio management model. This matrix is a strategy tool that provides guidance on how a corporation should prioritize its investments among its business units, leading to three possible scenarios: invest, protect, harvest, and divest.

BCG Matrix

In the 1970s, Bruce D. Henderson, founder of the Boston Consulting Group, came up with The Product Portfolio (aka BCG Matrix, or Growth-share Matrix), which would look at a successful business product portfolio based on potential growth and market shares. It divided products into four main categories: cash cows, pets (dogs), question marks, and stars.

Growth Matrix

In the FourWeekMBA growth matrix, you can apply growth for existing customers by tackling the same problems (gain mode). Or by tackling existing problems, for new customers (expand mode). Or by tackling new problems for existing customers (extend mode). Or perhaps by tackling whole new problems for new customers (reinvent mode).

Ansoff Matrix

You can use the Ansoff Matrix as a strategic framework to understand what growth strategy is more suited based on the market context. Developed by mathematician and business manager Igor Ansoff, it assumes a growth strategy can be derived by whether the market is new or existing, and the product is new or existing.

Kraljic Matrix

The Kraljic matrix is a framework that analyzes and classifies a company’s supplier base. Kraljic’s matrix is used by purchasers to maximize supply security/minimize supply risk and reduce costs. In so doing, it encourages them to see procurement as a strategic activity and not one that is simply transactional. The Kraljic matrix is divided into four quadrants based on varying degrees of supply risk and profit impact. Each quadrant defines a type of supply item and a strategy that reduces risk and cost. The quadrants encompass leverage items, bottleneck items, non-critical items, and strategic items.

Product-Process Matrix

The product-process matrix was introduced in two articles published in the Harvard Business Review in 1979. Developed by Robert H. Hayes and Steven C. Wheelwright, the matrix assesses the relationship between The stages of the product life cycle (from ideation to growth or decline) and The stages of the process (technological) life cycle.

Mendelow Stakeholder Matrix

The Mendelow stakeholder matrix is a framework used to analyze stakeholder attitudes and expectations and their potential impact on business decisions.

Requirements Traceability Matrix

A requirements traceability matrix (RTM) is a vital part of the lifecycle of any embedded system, helping organizations ensure their products are safe and meet intended standards. While the matrix has long been associated with medicine, technology, and engineering, the approach works well for any project regardless of industry. A requirements traceability matrix is a tool used to identify and maintain the status of project requirements and deliverables.

Value/Effort Matrix

The value/effort matrix is a feature prioritization model used to build effective product roadmaps. The value/effort matrix allows product managers to prioritize their product backlog using a confident, structured approach. The product team learns how to plan an effective roadmap, identify boundaries of work, and differentiate between needs and wants.

Decision Matrix

A decision matrix is a decision-making tool that evaluates and prioritizes a list of options. Decision matrices are useful when: A list of options must be trimmed to a single choice. A decision must be made based on several criteria. A list of criteria has been made manageable through the process of elimination.

Cash Flow Statement Matrix


Grand Strategy Matrix

The grand strategy matrix was created by American business theorist Paul Joseph DiMaggio in 1980. The matrix, which first appeared in the Strategic Management Journal, was initially used as a strategic option tool for managers.  The grand strategy matrix helps organizations develop feasible alternative strategies based on their competitive position and the growth of their industry.

Main Free Guides:

About The Author

Scroll to Top