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Be the Go-to Person!

Kupe’s Korner

I am thrilled to be the newest blogger on BA Times. I have been practicing business analysis for over 12 years now and have found one thing to be consistent with business analysis. Our profession is 80% art and 20% science. Ask any experienced BA a question and they either try to qualify the question to its smallest denominator to give you an answer, or they give you my favorite response, “it depends.” The reason is that most of what we do is not cut and dry. Like doctors “practice” medicine, we “practice” business analysis. With every experience we learn a little more and adapt accordingly. I am thankful for the opportunity to share some of my experiences with you through this blog. I plan on focusing on the art of our profession, but I may dip into the science piece every now and then. Let’s make Kupe’s Korner a place to share ideas and experiences to help us all reach our highest aspirations. And away we go…

For everything I do I try to find my go-to person or persons. For real estate advice, I have a few agents that are on speed dial. For projects around my house, I have my father-in-law to lean on. For my electronics purchases I know people that do more than enough research, and the list goes on. What each individual has in common are knowledge, experience and passion for the particular topic. In your circle are you the go-to person for business analysis? You can be!

Recently I received my tip of the month email from author Keith Ferrazzi. In his email he provided a quote which he pulled from entrepreneur/author Guy Kawasaki. “Eat like a bird and poop like an elephant.” In short, Keith went on to say birds eat 50 percent of their body weight per day. You should do the same when it comes to knowledge of your industry. Read everything, talk to everyone, be everywhere. Don’t rely on others or be passive about it; become an absolute expert by taking the lead. Once you’ve become a hub of this information, don’t hoard it. Spread it around-like the elephant!

You need to consume as much information as you can related to business analysis and the industry you work in. Never stop finding ways to get information. As you consume this information share it with everyone that will listen. Slowly but surely everyone will start to recognize you as the “go-to person”. You’ll start to see peers coming to you for advice and your perspective. Management will want you to be part of the most important initiatives. Project managers will not want to manage a project without you or at least without your input.

Get the Scoop

So where do you turn for all this information? For starters, keep reading all the great stuff on BA Times. I recommend you begin using Google Reader and subscribe to the many online business analysis communities and blogs. Do the same for your industry. Google Reader can be your one place to collect online information. As you go you can add and delete feeds as appropriate. Seek out individuals in your company and start to increase your industry knowledge. Continue or start participating in your local IIBA chapter to gain valuable business analysis information.

At the minimum, take one hour a week and read and participate in the online communities by commenting on discussions/blogs. Be careful…it becomes addictive!

Share the Scoop

Don’t hoard this fabulous information you start collecting. Share this wealth of knowledge you have with everyone willing to listen. Share articles with the other analysts you work with. Get the ideas out on Twitter, you have a Twitter account right? Forward some of your favorite articles to relevant contacts. Post discussions on community sites like BA Times, and LinkedIn and Facebook groups.

Here is a little thing I do. As I speak with people I pick up hints of their issues, problems, and what they are passionate about. As I come across related information I share it with those individuals. Fortunately my memory is still strong, but I need to start coming up with a “system” where I capture this information for contacts and not rely solely on my memory. You should come up with a system as well.

Enjoy being the source of information and the go-to person.


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Jonathan “Kupe” Kupersmith is Director of Client Solutions, B2T Training and has over 12 years of business analysis experience. He has served as the lead Business Analyst and Project Manager on projects in various industries. He serves as a mentor for business analysis professionals and is a Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) through the IIBA and is BA Certified through B2T Training. Kupe is a connector and has a goal in life to meet everyone! Contact Kupe at [email protected].