As a business analyst, I ask a lot of questions- not just because I’m a business analyst, but because asking questions is in my nature. My personality, inherently, makes me a great business analyst. I’m always asking why and trying to understand people and things. Sometimes I am personally misunderstood, and accused of giving people the third degree and making them uncomfortable. I don’t mean to do that at all. It’s just that when opinions are expressed or statements are made, I like to understand how that conclusion was ‘got to’. That’s the interesting part. I like to open doors, and see what’s behind them.
Professionally, when asking questions, I want to do so in the most empathetic way possible. I like to start out by saying that I’m going to put my BA hat on. In this way, the other person can understand that by asking my questions, I am acting as a business analyst. I explain that I am not interested in being right, but in doing what is right, and that I need their help in understanding what the right thing to do is. Further, when restating information that was conveyed to me, I sometimes conveniently make a mistake. This encourages the other person to correct me, and reveal information that might have gone unstated or taken for granted.
How do you ask questions that open doors?