To understand what's going on, you have to get in aconversation with the people trying to put you out of business.
—Edward Shultz, former CEO, Smith & Wesson Holding Company1
As we've seen, the world in which we live today is more complexly interconnected than ever before. It's a world in which a growing array of individuals, interest groups, and organizations view themselves as having a legitimate stake in how you operate and a right to influence your decisions. Challenging? Yes—even scary. But stakeholders are here to stay and growing more powerful all the time.
The expanding importance of stakeholders is perhaps the single most important element in what we have called ...