12 Must Read Business Analysis Books for 2017

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Nurturing your career is easier with an inspiring read in your back pocket, pick up these must read business analysis books and broaden your knowledge base.

Following our enlightening conversation in Elevating Business Analysis From Zero To One with Tshepo Matjila we were inspired to curate a list of must-read books for the business analyst.

The choice selection below contains recommendations from prominent practising business analysts who consider these books incredibly relevant to what business analysts do, with the potential to transform your business analysis and take it to the next level.

Pick up your reading habit and nurture your career with these 12 must read business analysis books:

(that’s just one a month)

#1 The Art of Creative Thinking: 89 Ways to See Things Differently

by Rod Judkins

Do not confuse this book for an instruction manual. It is a practical book that makes you argue with yourself and question the way in which you do everyday things. – Charlene Seini

#2 David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants

by Malcolm Gladwell

At a disadvantage? Think again! This book challenges the conventional meaning of advantages and disadvantages, and has given me a new outlook on life’s everyday challenges. – Desigan Moonsamy

#3 Reengineering the Corporation: A Manifesto for Business Revolution

by Michael Hammer and James Champy

Using technology to automate old ways of working and speed up processes cannot address fundamental performance deficiencies. Instead of embedding outdated processes, obliterate them and start over. – Joe Newbert

#4 Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters

by Richard Rumelt

Every business analyst needs to be able to think strategically. I don’t mean that you need to work at the enterprise level, although that’s a skill worth developing, but rather that you need to understand what the strategy is for every change to the organisation. – Kevin Brennan

#5 Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

by Ashlee Vance

Elon is a brilliant entrepreneur and changed three industries at the same time, one would have been incredible. It’s a fascinating read to see how close the line is between success and failure. – Martin Pienaar

#6 Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us

by Seth Godin

Tribes, we need you to lead us is exactly the tagline that business analysts need to adopt and realise. We need to lead our profession, organisations and teams; business analysis should be a profession that leads. – Mohamed Bray

#7 The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

by Eric Ries

There are key concepts that will help you develop into a business analyst that can add real business value: learning through experimentation and failure as well the concept of minimum viable product. – Ryan Folster

#8 Building People Building Dreams: Can a Church Change a Nation?

by Tom Deuschle

This book Chronicles the power of how one purpose driven life and dream can ignite the passion and dreams of an entire nation and a generation. – Samuel Tafadzwa

#9 VISA: The Power of an Idea

by Paul Chutkow

The ethos of how one man, A.P Gianini, an immigrant, built the largest payment scheme (Visa) and one of America’s biggest banks – Bank of America (BofA) – by putting the customer at the heart of his business. – Tshepo Matjila

#10 The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement

by Eliyahu Goldratt, Jeff Cox

This book provides some really good insights into lean processing and continuous improvement. It is written in the form of a novel which makes it easy to read and the key concepts very memorable. – Corrine Thomas

#11 Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

by Chip Heath

Presenting and communicating ideas is a core part of the business analyst role.  Getting people’s attention can be difficult, and this book provides some excellent theories, ideas and examples. – Adrian Reed

#12 How to Measure Anything Workbook: Finding the Value of Intangibles in Business

by Douglas W. Hubbard

Given how often business analysts facilitate evaluation of just about everything, you’ll be well armed to have this text with you to measure priority, risk, value, etc. The so-called qualitative things are measurable! – Curtis Michelson

12 Must-Read Business Analysis Books For 2017 was first published in the Inter-View Report 2016.

Note: this article has affiliate links to each book, but this hasn’t influenced any recommendations as people read and enjoyed these books long before we decided to write an article about them.

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