One of the most common things in all the companies I have worked for is that BAs have to attend a lot of meetings that have the same objective, it’s just different people attending or they’re called by people at different levels of the organization.
Say there are 3 meetings where your attendance as a BA is mandatory: one is for your boss to get the status of your project, second is for the overall project manager to get the status of your project and third is so that one of the stakeholders can get the status of your project. You basically report the status again and again and…again. The questions you’re asked might be different coming from people at different levels, each of them is interested in other things, but the status is mainly the same.
So why must the BA attend all these meetings?
Theoretically, if all 3 meetings are required, following the people hierarchy of the project, this should go like this: BA gives the status to his/her boss, the boss attends the meeting with the overall project manager and the project manager gives the status to the stakeholder. This should be painless. Not very efficient but still acceptable.
In reality, the BA is attending all 3 meetings, wasting about 3 hours of his time, getting angry and confused about having to attend when she has so much to do, having to listen to all the people invited presenting their statuses until she gets her turn. Worst thing is when these status meetings become an interminable discussion about requirements of the project or a monologue of the project manager or of the stakeholder.
Any thoughts why this happens?
Is it because the BA must be there to answer any particular questions the project manager or the stakeholder might have? Is it because there’s a general confusion on people’s roles or the meeting’s objective? Lack of accountability – in the end the person communicating the status further is accountable for what he’s reporting? Boss or project manager does not understand what’s going on and needs some hand-holding? Want to avoid the broken telephone syndrome?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and if you went through the same situation in any of your projects.
Photo credits: Tall Chris on www.flickr.com – thanks!