Stakeholder: (n.) A corporate stakeholder is a party that can affect or be affected by the actions of the business as a whole; Has pretty much nothing to do with Team Edward, (although we’re so Team Jacob!) True Blood, or Vampire Diaries.
The stakeholder concept was first used in a 1963 internal memorandum at the Stanford Research Institute. It defined stakeholders as “those groups without whose support the organization would cease to exist.” The theory was later developed and championed by R. Edward Freeman in the 1980s. Since then it has gained wide acceptance in business practice and in theorizing relating to strategic management, corporate governance, business purpose and corporate social responsibility.
A common problem that arises with having numerous stakeholders in an enterprise is that their various self-interests may not all be aligned. In fact, they may be in conflict with each other.