At a recent Atlanta IIBA meeting, Lisa Heiser was telling me about the frustration that her dad felt because he doesn’t understand what she does. He asked “How can you have worked for an airline, then a telecommunications company, and then the government? How do you know what to do in these different types of companies? What exactly do you do??”

Lisa struggled to explain the BA role to her father and finally hit on an analogy with which he could relate. While they were eating dinner in a restaurant she said “Dad, think about the job of our waiter. She comes to us (the customer) and asks us what we want/need (requirements). Then she writes down our orders in a way the chef and kitchen staff will understand – she translates our order to the chef so he knows exactly what we want. Then she delivers our food to us from the kitchen and makes sure that we got what we asked for! She could work for an Italian pizzeria, a French bistro, or a Japanese steakhouse and she would still do basically the same job. Just like a BA!”

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