Enabling companies to improve organisational attainment through stakeholder engagement
Research at the Henley Business School, led by the John Madejski Centre of Reputation (JMCR), has produced an innovative tool which addresses the gap between stakeholder data corporate strategy, and underpins corporate stakeholder engagement strategies. By using this tool, companies are now able to measure and strengthen the key drivers of stakeholder relationships, achieving corporate goals such as greater customer retention, more pro-social outcomes and more ambitious sustainability targets. The approach, known as the “RELATE tool”, enables organisations to build stronger relationships with stakeholders by measuring and influencing the psychological drivers of behaviour.
More specifically, the tool uses theory and knowledge from social and behavioural psychology to help corporations strengthen stakeholder relationships, with the aim of achieving organisational attainment targets. Previously, it had been methodologically difficult to address the lack of connection between stakeholder data and corporate strategy. What is novel, therefore, is that the bi-directional RELATE tool utilises psychological knowledge to create a feedback loop enabling stakeholder insights to inform corporate strategy, which in turn can be evaluated, refined and modified into a process that will help the organisation to change stakeholder behaviour.
The tool has international reach and is used globally by a number of large companies and international consultancies to guide stakeholder engagement and improve organisational attainment. It has informed the global engagement strategies of FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 companies, driving significant increases in revenue from more sustainable brands, increased customer retention, increased staff wellbeing and retention, as well as underpinned corporate tax strategies. As a result, these organisations are now better able to deliver their corporate strategies.
The resulting benefits and attainment are significant in terms of higher revenue, increased customer retention, more pro-social outcomes and more ambitious sustainability targets. It follows therefore that the societal benefits are also significant in terms, for example, of working towards the Sustainable Development Goals.
'Modelling bi-directional research: A fresh approach to stakeholder theory’. Journal of Strategy and Management, 5 (1) pp. 5–24
doi: https://doi.org/10.1108/17554251211200428 (ABS 1*)