Airports are an integral part of the wider chain of supply and connectivity for the country and community involving the provision of consumables and the transport of materials and equipment. Airports of all sizes have a massive stakeholder and community engagement, response and interaction task to manage – this presents an opportunity to gain support for growth and expansion by developing social capital to drive outcomes.
Aviation Projects and Balonne Shire Council worked together to engage the community and stakeholders in consultation for the St George Airport Master Plan, ultimately gaining input and social capital value in representative community needs and understanding social impacts. St George Airport has GA and RPT operators. Through numerous avenues of open and respectful engagement and participation, the master plan properly and appropriately took into account stakeholder views, perceptions and positions. The responses outlined generally what stakeholders thought about, including how well the airport is maintained, the proximity to town and ease of service and was clear on what expectations were not met, the level of current and expected services and views on level of commercial development. They also responded to the level of key social and economic benefits contributed to by the airport including the growth of region, tourism, local economy, medical access to the town, employment growth and opportunity for population growth.
Key points about stakeholder engagement include:
- Building relationships
- Strategic and planned approach “wired to” trust, respect and communication
- Creates shared value
- Efficient and cost-effective engagement activities
- Identify and prioritise activities, when and who to engage
- Understand what you hope to achieve and what your stakeholders and community want to achieve
- Align engagement with strategic and/or operational goals
- Plan and make available resources, skills and time
- Make it a whole of organisation approach, top down and part of business as usual and/or project based as required
To understand more about stakeholder engagement, or to see how Aviation Projects can help you with your stakeholder engagement contact us.