The stakeholder manager
The term stakeholder is becoming part of the corporate and indeed national and global vocabulary. Stakeholding buds are bursting into blossom across countries, contexts, cultures, conferences and companies, not to mention the public and voluntary sectors of the economy. All managers and directors are faced with real, or imagined, conflicts of interest or competing demands for time and resources, between shareholders and stakeholders. This has always been the case, but the contemporary emphasis on stakeholders has brought this to a head. Although the more astute organizations, managers and directors maintain a suitable balance between the various demands placed on them, and there are systematic ways to do this, there are a few voices opposed to stakeholding in any shape or form. In order to suggest that stakeholding is the viable, inclusive and sustainable way for companies to proceed, the article considers and criticizes the anti-stakeholder arguments, before bringing in endorsements and suggesting the way forward.