As facilitators of knowledge exchange, tasked with helping business and delivery stakeholders reach that “shared vision”, effective use of visual models is a critical skill.
To write or even speak English is not a science but an art. There are no reliable words. Whoever writes English is involved in a struggle that never lets up even for a sentence. He is struggling against vagueness, against obscurity, against the lure of the decorative adjective, against the encroachment of Latin and Greek, and, above all, against the worn-out phrases and dead metaphors with which the language is cluttered up.”
— George Orwell
We know that the business stakeholders whose needs we elicit and capture as requirements are our customers. We know that the sponsor who foots the bill for our work is our customer. Often, product end-users are considered customers. We don’t typically think of designers, developers and QA analysts – our delivery team counterparts – as customers, but maybe we should.
I really like a simple risk matrix as a visual aid, because it makes it much easier for me to explain of how severity and probability combine to make a risk more or less serious than if I tried to explain it with words alone.
You may be a great facilitator, an excellent “elicitor” of requirements; your analytical skills may be second to none, but if you can’t package and present information in an easily usable form, then you’re not completing the job as a business analyst.
A great portion of our efforts to hone our craft revolve around becoming better communicators, or finding that set of symbols that is most conducive to reaching that critical shared understanding for a particular work effort.