3 Bad Habits Business Analysts Should Avoid
There are bad habits that are all too easy to pick up in every career and industry. When people adopt these habits, their professionalism is diminished, and they are less able to build rapport with others. Discover some of the top bad habits business analysts should be aware of.
3 Habits Business Analysts Should Ditch
1) Being more process-focused than people-focused – Business analysts are usually fantastic at implementing processes to deliver better value to clients. While BAs should understand the processes needed to function effectively in their role like the back of their hand, they shouldn’t be more process-focused than people-focused.
People want to work with business analysts who are highly communicative and receptive to their ideas. Adopting a mindset that is both agile and relational will help BAs become more people-focused and grow their influence. It will also help business analysts establish trust with customers, peers, and stakeholders.
2) Appearing to be dismissive of others’ ideas -- Most business analysts are skilled at detecting flaws in business processes. They must have this ability to be good at what they do. However, when communicating with clients, BAs should avoid pointing out too many problems and saying “no” too often, which can make them appear dismissive of others’ ideas. A contributor to the BA Times wrote,
“Some BAs want to say no to everything, and as it is our JOB to analyze things, we can usually come up with five good reasons something won’t work before the other person has even finished explaining the idea. A simple swap of ‘yes, but…’ to ‘yes, and…’ attempts to build on an idea and help people think their way out of problems rather than list off all the flaws in the idea.”1
By swapping out your “no” for a “yes, but” or “yes, and,” you can make customers and colleagues feel more understood and build greater rapport with them.
3) Underestimating the business analyst role -- Some business analysts make the mistake of believing their role is not as important as it is. BAs can underestimate their role for several reasons. For example, it’s likely that some of their colleagues have no idea what a business analyst does. This can make business analysts feel like outsiders.
To combat being undervalued and to avoid undermining their own role, business analysts should advocate for themselves by warmly educating those who are interested in what a BA does. This is most effective when BAs explain their role in terms others can understand. This will help to remind others as well as business analysts themselves how important BAs are to an organization.
Continuous Learning is the Best Habit Any Business Analyst Can Adopt
We’ve talked a lot about bad BA habits, but what about good habits? One of the best habits a business analyst can pick up is continuous learning. Many business analysts pursue continuous learning by getting certified with professional development.
1. BA Times. When BAs go bad.