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If You Can Make it Here, You Can Make it Anywhere: On What Makes a Good Business Analyst by Rajan Chandras

In the latest post, What Makes a Good Business Analyst?, Rajan Chandras cites some soft items from Forrester’s Business Analyst Assessment Workbook:

  • Ability to think abstractly, identify patterns, and generate ideas and solutions
  • Understanding of when and how to escalate issues or needs
  • Understanding of and ability to delivery the appropriate level of detail needed for each task
  • Interest in exploring and understanding new concepts and topic areas
  • Emotionally invested in the work
  • Ability to learn by shadowing stakeholders
  • Ability to clearly articulate technology in terms stakeholders can understand
  • Understanding of the organizational culture and its impact on processes and projects (this one seems obvious, but the latter phrase is more profound than might seem at first glance)
  • Ability to drive a decision analysis and selection process
  • Ability to recognize patterns in requirements and categorize them appropriately

What’s more, there are some suggestions by Rajan Chandras himself:

  • Know the organization’s external environment: its competitive position, current state of the industry, geographical & social factors, etc.
  • Know the organization’s internal environment: its financial position, organization culture, IT maturity, etc.
  • Adapt to the needs (your language, dress etc.), but be yourself. Imperfect, yet genuine, is fine; falsity comes through easily, and will destroy your credibility in no time.

No doubt, no boss can reject such a perfect analyst. But I’m afraid these standards are suitable for every professionals. That is to say, they create a model to explain everything. It is too universal to be served as a good filter to select the most proper analysts. She or he may more marketable in any other business line.