WHAT IS THE SECRET TO BECOME A PROFICIENT BUSINESS ANALYST IN JUST A FEW DAYS?
Most people who want to become proficient Business Analysts think that the only way to achieve this is if they work at it for months or even years and of course go on a generic BA training course. They are partly right and partly wrong.
WHY THEY ARE PARTLY RIGHT
Let me start by explaining why I believe they are partly right first. To be a successful and proficient Business Analyst you have to practice the techniques, gain hands-on experience within the project and business environment and have a really good understanding of the overall premise of being a Business Analyst.
These skills can take time do develop and hone and as you progress through your career, you will become better and more proficient in playing the role of the Business Analyst. Over time (and adding some effort and focus) you will develop your skills and become a really proficient Business Analyst.
However, there is a flip side to this coin.
Bare with me while I take a really simple analogy to emphasize and put this into some perspective: It is almost like learning to make a really good cup of coffee. When you do this for the first time – you need to understand the purpose of making coffee, then you have to learn how to use the kettle and ingredients to be put into the cup and then finally you need to make sure the mix of the coffee, milk and sugar is just right for the individual you are making it for. To get good at making coffee can take some practice (and concentration) and you will get better every time you do it. Soon you will make that same coffee on ‘autopilot’ whilst having a conversation with someone else about something completely different. This is what is called the learning process.
Just to be clear though, becoming a Business Analyst takes much more time, effort and practice than learning to make a cup of coffee, however there are some similarities in the pathway to becoming proficient. Where learning how to make a coffee might take as little as 5 minutes, becoming a Business Analyst can take anything from 3 days to 5 years or more…it all comes down to how perfect your first, second and last take at being a Business Analyst will be. And this is where the flip side of this coin comes into play…
Although I agree with lots of people that being a proficient and successful Business Analyst can take a lot of time and practice I also believe at the same time that most people who put their minds to it, can be a proficient Business Analyst in as little as 5 days. You can make your cake, and also eat it.
SO WHY DO I BELIEVE PEOPLE ARE ALSO PARTLY WRONG?
Just like when you make a cup of coffee for the first time, there are certain basic things that everyone can do. Everyone can find a coffee cup, get the ingredients together and take action around boiling water and pouring it into the cup. Most people with some basic guidance will then be able to put it all together and at the very least put a pretty good cup of coffee forward for someone to drink. It may not be the barista style coffee you find in a fancy coffee shop, but it is a good enough cup to be a drinkable cup of coffee for someone to enjoy. Learning to become a Business Analyst is similar.
There are many different types of everyday skills that a Business Analyst performs that are learnable in a relatively short period of time. Many of those skills can even be skills that you are already performing in a similar or slightly varied way, which means with some Business Analysis context and a few tweaks can be adapted to your new role of becoming a Business Analyst in a relatively short time frame. Then there are some other skills; such as learning to model requirements using specific notations that can also be learned quite quickly but will require some practice in a real life work scenario in order to become second nature and highly effective. Every professional Business Analyst will tell you that they learn something new almost every day; every project poses new problems and interesting challenges to solve for. Continuous stakeholder relationship building and negotiation around business requirements are just a few of the things they will be faced with every day. It requires an open mind and willingness to learn continuously. The key point here is that these Business Analysts uses the same skills, techniques and approaches to solve most of their every day challenges. These are learnable skills in a short period of time, and then you get really good at it over time.
The profession of Business Analysis is a really vast one (just look at the BABOK® v3.0 Guide definition of the profession, 500 pages of content and more than 50 different Business Analysis techniques to master!). Learn exactly what do Business Analysts actually do, so that you can deepen your understanding. Becoming a Business Analyst is certainly not a trivial matter and there will always be more to learn as a Business Analyst as you progress through your career.
However, when you learn these skills from the right person in the right setting and coming from the right perspective then you will be able to become a proficient Business Analyst in just a few days. There are certain skills, techniques and approaches that a Business Analyst repeats about 70-80% of the time in their every day roles that are either transferrable skills or learnable techniques. These are the skills, techniques and approaches you need to make sure you learn in order to become a proficient Business Analyst in 5 days…
SO WHAT IS THE SECRET TO BECOME A PROFICIENT BUSINESS ANALYST IN JUST A FEW DAYS THEN?
The secret ingredient when choosing the right training, support and guidance when you decide to go down the path of becoming a proficient Business Analyst is to identify an experienced, passionate and professional Business Analyst who has been down the path from both an academic angle and a practical career perspective. …Most trainers in the market don’t have this background and hence it can be hard to find the right person to be guided by as an aspiring and new Business Analyst!
As a professional Business Analyst with this unique combination of strong academic and practical work experience, I (Esta Lessing CBAP®) have chosen to dedicate some of the next few years to focus on helping others to become proficient as Business Analysts in the most efficient and practical way whilst guiding you to direct your efforts towards to most common, practical and relevant techniques and approaches when performing your Business Analysis activities.
ARE YOU READY TO TAKE THE CHALLENGE AND BECOME A PROFICIENT BUSINESS ANALYST WITH MY GUIDANCE IN JUST 3 DAYS?
For people who are serious about becoming Business Analysts, I would suggest you consider joining one of my 3-day IIBA® Endorsed training programs coming up.
The training takes the format of a 3-day hands-on and interactive style professional development program. Your specific questions, career plans and individual goals will be integrated into the program to ensure you achieve your unique goals towards becoming a proficient Business Analyst. We keep groups small to maximize your learning. Book in early to avoid disappointment, because I can only run a few of these programs every couple of months.