Sometimes Business analysts tease Project Managers, we joke that we are more important than they are. In a meeting with a group of BAs last week I was reminded of how much we need PMs!!
Analysis paralysis! We joke about it but it is a real problem. Most BAs can get stuck in details whether they like to admit it or not. We love to analyze and we get into so much detail that we forget that we have to actually get something done. I am reminded of a Calculus professor in college – the absent minded professor who would forget that our class hour was over because he was so enjoying calculating derivatives on the blackboard. We model and we define terms and we “what if” and we get completely lost in our fascinating world of ideas. We need someone to pull us back up out of the weeds and force us to take that first step in the direction of the finish line.
Not only do we get lost in details, we can’t stay within scope. Everyone always blames the business people for scope creep but let’s be honest, BAs wander outside the scope of the project as much as anyone. We start thinking about how we could help fix another business area or we get an idea for how we could help the business sell more products or offer a new product or . . . . Where does it end?? It ends when our Project Manager reminds us that we need to stay focused on the requirements inside our scope and we should get just the details that we absolutely need to move forward. We tend to be perfectionists but we usually don’t have time to get every single requirement perfectly so we need to prioritize, get the most important details and move forward. Get something done.
So I say to all of you Project Managers – thank you and keep doing what you do best: keep us on track and focused, reminding us that although we can’t do everything perfectly, we are doing a very good job!