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Best of BATimes: 16 Business Analysis Principles

A principle can be defined as an underlying fundamental law or concept. Therefore, Business Analysis principles are the basic rules that should be followed to manage changes successfully.

The Business Analysis Book of Knowledge (BABOK) does not currently contain an official list of principles for successful change initiatives. However, IIBA’s Agile Analysis Guide provides 7 principles which are:

  1. See the whole.
  2. Think as a customer.
  3. Analyze to determine what is valuable.
  4. Get real using examples.
  5. Understand what is doable.
  6. Stimulate collaboration and continuous improvement.
  7. Avoid waste.



Here are 16 Business Analysis Principles we are proposing:
  1. Set clear and objective goals and outcomes – A change without clear objectives is bound to fail.
  2. Engage stakeholders continuously – Stakeholder needs are the reason for the change. Stakeholders must work together throughout the project.
  3. Include all relevant stakeholders – Successful change management requires all key stakeholders to be included in the change initiative.
  4. Think holistically – Changes affect people, processes, and technology and are essential for successful change.
  5. Adapt vigorously – Welcome change for competitive advantage.
  6. Deliver iteratively – Better outcomes frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale.
  7. Encourage change adoption – Motivate stakeholders to change for the better.
  8. Communicate frequently – The most efficient and effective communication is face-to-face conversation.
  9. Measure continually – Better outcomes are the primary measure of progress.
  10. Work sustainably – Stakeholders should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.
  11. Pursue excellence – Continuous attention to excellence in business analysis skills, processes, and tools.
  12. Avoid waste – Art of maximizing the number of requirements not done–is essential.
  13. Reflect regularly – Stakeholders reflect on how to become more effective, then change behavior accordingly.
  14. Organize dynamically – Best solutions emerge from self-organizing teams.
  15. Manage risks proactively – Identify, analyze, and mitigate risks
  16. Define roles and responsibilities – Set clear expectations from all key stakeholders.


I sincerely believe having a set of guiding principles for a profession is extremely valuable. Do comment about any other key principle we should include in the principles.

LN Mishra

LN Mishra (LN) CBAP, CBDA, AAC, CCA Helping BAs to Improve Their Careers: Guided 1000+ BAs to be IIBA® Certified World’s 1st BA to hold all 6 IIBA certifications Practicing BA for 25+ years, Acclaimed Author, Versatile Trainer and Consultant Co-founder and COO @ Adaptive US I have 25+ years of professional experience in agile software development, requirements analysis, business analysis, IT GRC, and management consulting. I currently play the role of business analysis thought leader and product owner, SuXeed, Adaptive’s flagship learning solution. He has been part of multiple large system developments, In-country Value System for PDO Oman and the Color Data Management System for AkzoNobel. I was also involved in multiple large ERP implementation projects and was involved in one of the world’s largest change management programs in PricewaterhouseCoopers, for a large utility agency. I have conducted 300+ workshops in business analysis, requirements management, agile, software project management, Six Sigma, CMM, ISO 9001, and ISO 27001. I have guided 30+ six sigma projects in iGate, MACH, and Akzo Nobel. I hold Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM) from IIM Ahmedabad and BE (Honors) in Electronics.