Blackmetric Business Solutions
BA Digest 
A round-up of useful BA resources from the web
Welcome to the July/August edition of BA Digest.  There is so much happening in the BA world, that this is somewhat of a 'bumper' edition, so I'll keep this intro as brief as possible!
You'll notice that we've given the newsletter a bit of a re-design. In this edition we bring you coffee break reading (ten short thought provoking articles), as well as information about upcoming webinars, courses and BA conferences 
I hope that you find this edition of BA Digest interesting.
Coffee Break Reading
Ten thought provoking articles from a range of authors around the web, each of which can be read in ten minutes or less
1. The Agile Trap by Charles Lambdin: "Stop treating teams like they work in a factory. They are not making plastic cutlery. The same rules do not apply. You are not running the same tried-and-true recipe, you’re designing recipes."
2. My BizOps Journey by Kevin Brennan: "Right now that role is mostly found in startups and Silicon Valley, but like many things, expect to see it expand outside them. The term for this new role is business operations, which has inevitably been shortened to BizOps."
3. Are Business Analysts UX experts in disguise? By Eric Provost: "By learning more about UX techniques, Business Analysts can improve their knowledge of end users (one of their stakeholders) and better work with UX experts."

4. User stories are not… By Allan Kelly: "User Stories are not promises or commitments. Stories are ideas. Stories are tokens for work that might be done. Little more." 
5. The Tricky Question of “Purpose” by Adrian Reed: "If organisations work in a ‘bubble’ without understanding their stakeholders, it is likely that their processes will diverge from what is actually desired or needed by those who actually use them."
6. The Benefits of Mapping Benefits By Anna Rajander (in BA Times): "To get maximum benefit from a benefit map, the benefits should be mapped early and referenced often to ensure a project stays focused on the delivery of benefits."
7. Remote working: how to drive innovation and collaborate effectively by Kay Hardy & Deborah Garfen (on the BCS Content Hub): "In this article, we explained how we conduct virtual workshops and capture audience insights, illustrate customer journeys, conduct competitor analysis, prioritise ideas and learn from project retrospectives."
8. How to Be More Assertive at Work (Without Being a Jerk) by Melody Wilding: "Put simply, being assertive is a happy medium between the two extremes of aggressive and passive."
9. Agile User Story Splitting by Acceptance Criteria & Test Cases by Rachael Wilterdink (on the Skyline Website): "If you have lots and lots of test cases or scenarios, that is yet another clue that the story is probably too big."
10. The “Solution” Is Simple, Isn’t It? By Adrian Reed: “But we’re just <<insert nature of change here>>, how hard can that be. It’s not rocket science is it?!” 
Webinars & Online Events
Upcoming Courses with Allan Kelly
After the success of our recent #BACommunity webinar with Allan Kelly, we're pleased to have negotiated a special 20% discount on two of Allan's upcoming courses!
Use promo code 'BLACKMETRIC' to receieve your discount
Be sure to enter the promo code before entering your card details
BA Conferences
A whole number of BA events and conferences have been re-scheduled or have transitioned to run as virtual or hybrid events. It's really important that as a community we continue to support these events as many conference organisers will have been impacted by the 'lockdown'. As soon as the lockdown is lifted and it's safe to do so, let's support the conferences that have supported our community for so long! Here are just some of the conferences that you should have firmly on your radar:
Austin Business Analysis Development Day: Austin, Texas (virtual event)
BA Conference Europe: London, 21st-23rd Sep (hybrid event)
BA Summit Southern Africa: Cape Town/Johannesburg, 5th-6th Oct (virtual event)
Building Business Capability: Las Vegas, NV, USA 19th-23rd Oct ** Use code BLACKMETRICBBC for a 15% discount! **
BA & Beyond: Amsterdam & Brussels, 12th-13th Oct & 26th Oct
BA Istanbul: Istanbul, Turkey (virtual event): 1st-2nd Dec
BA World: Toronto, Canada, 14th-17th Dec
Minneapolis & St Paul Professional Development Day: Minneapolis, MN, USA, 20th Apr 20201
European BA Day: Frankfurt-on-the-main, Germany, 30th April 2021
BA Life: Edinburgh, Scotland, 3rd June 2021
Additionally, be sure to connect with your local IIBA chapter, as there are regular chapter events around the world too. For those of you in the UK, be sure to check out the IIBA UK chapter.
Thanks once again, I hope to see you somewhere (virtually) soon....

Kind regards,
Adrian Reed
Principal Consultant
Blackmetric Business Solutions Ltd
Business analysis consulting & training

T: +44 (0) 23 9298 4546
49 Station Road, Polegate, East Sussex, BN26 6EA
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