Day 2 – Pre Conference Workshop
I got a chance to meet Scott Ambler, another thought leader who spoke about agile development. He is a prolific writer and practice leader of iterative and agile development. His teaching technique is to make controversial statements to incite you to think. It worked on me. I got worked up about a couple of his comments. I was motivated to speak up several times about the role of a BA and how it aligns well with the principles he discussed. I am still not sure whether he appreciates the BA role.
He is quite vocal that development does not need business analysts as a bottle neck between the developer and the business stakeholders. He maintains a go-between between adults is not necessary and can deter efficient and effective development. Believe it or not, most points that Mr. Ambler made are again the same principles we teach our business analysts. He reinforced the fact that to be successful in agile you need to know multiple techniques, be skilled to wear multiple hats, model and document only what is necessary and useful, and plan before you start working. He just never admitted that he knew BAs follow these same principles. Luckily the principles of agile development are not really new and have tested long before the "agile" name was coined. BAs can be a great asset to an agile project. I attended other sessions but these two pre-conference presentations were highlights for me and kept me thinking what a great time it is to be a business analyst! BAs rule at the conference!