Book Review: How to Start a Business Analyst Career (2nd Edition)

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Starting a business analyst career is no easy task. It is a highly sought out career path for many, so trying to differentiate from the competition can be difficult. One book that is there to provide insight into landing a business analyst career is How to Start a Business Analyst Career (2nd Edition) by Laura Brandenburg. This is a review of this book from a recently hired business analyst’s point of view.

First and foremost, I appreciated this book starting with what it is like to be a business analyst. It is difficult to make an informed decision to pursue something if only the favorable aspects are showcased. I may be new to this realm of work, but I already see how this section correlates to what I do as a business analyst. It is important to find out as much information as possible, good and bad, before fully coming to a decision.

After calling out the reader to completely think about this career pursuit, the book also presents some information that business analysts should know and strategies to get a foot into the door. I appreciated the fact that it covered hard and soft skills. The book is not comprehensive, but it could be used to create a list of items for further review.

A majority of the book plays to the title of the book and covers strategies and tips for breaking into the world of business analysis. This is where the book is most comprehensive. Impressively, the book highlights everything from events to seek out, to career transition strategies. Aside from a very thorough list of events and communities for networking, I also saw a lot of value from the networking tips. One of my biggest takeaways from this section was actually to lower expectations when it comes to networking events. At the events, instead of focusing on getting a job, aim to create connections. Opportunities are more easily revealed to people known rather than acquaintances and, as added bonus, lasting relationships can be mutually beneficial over time.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone whose curiosity is tempted to pursue business analysis. It has some great tips for drawing experience from past, current, and even future engagements. Aside from that, it also presents ways to step before you leap into business analysis. If you are looking for a starting point, How to Start a Business Analyst Career (2nd Edition) by a Laura Brandenburg is a good start.

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