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Friday, July 22, 2011

How to be a high performing Business Analyst

Being a Business Analyst can be very tiring, you may be juggling more than one project, meeting various stakeholders, managing deadlines all while gathering requirements. There are days where you seem not getting anywhere and have the feeling that you have made no progress whatsoever and haven’t delivered anything tangible. To avoid getting in this situation being productive is very important, after all we all want to achieve more with less effort.
Over the last few years I have performed various activities to increase my productivity and I could share some of them with you.

Make use of all the spare time
There are times where you find yourself waiting in queue or traveling to work these are great time to do something useful, if you use public transport you could take reading material with you and if you drive to work, make sure you load your iPod with podcasts or other training materials.

Use the right moment
Every one of us has the favorite time of the day when we feel very energetic and creative, use those times for analysis or creative thinking.

Be efficient
We all find our self doing some work again and again, like documenting meeting minutes or drawing process diagram, make sure every time you do something new store it in a repository which you could use when you have to perform the same task again.

Now this can be hard to some people, as a BA we tend to take more tasks than what we need to, try to delegate the tasks to other team members, I recently found that I nominated someone in my team to be the scribe in the meeting it gave me more time to run the workshop and concentrate on gathering requirements.

Take breaks
It is very important to take regular short break, go for a walk or visit the kitchen, it is an excellent place to meet people and build relationship with your stakeholders and users.

Say NO
I must confess I am not very good at this but there will be times when you have so many things to do, if you take any more work you will not be able to perform well and it is best to say no in those instances.

Tidy your workspace
I know this sound obvious but you will be amazed how great and energetic you will feel when you have a tidy desk.

Involve in Social Activities
To be effective it is very important to balance work with rest, attend the social events at work, find yourself a lunch buddy or even start a book club at work.

Staying health is very important to be productive make sure you stay healthy by eating healthy food, exercising and sleep well.

Allocate fixed time for certain tasks
If you find yourself doing certain activities which take forever and before you realize you have already spend more than required time, identify those tasks and before you start them allocate certain time and stop working on it when the time elapsed, you may want to continue working on it after you have completed some other task.

Taking time off work

Make sure you regularly plan your holidays, there is nothing more energetic to take a day off every now and then from the work environment and do something you are interested it, that way when you come back to work you are more focused and rested.


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