Apr 20, 2016 2:30:57 PM by John Weathington
Whose advice are you listening to when building your requirements?
Sure, your end users think they know what they want, but are they the right people to assist you in designing a solution? Maybe not.
We've all heard the term subject matter expert or SME. In fact, you're a subject matter expert in certain regards if you're being paid to translate end user requirements into design solutions. However, you're likely not the right person to certify that the solution you're suggesting is the right solution. You may do the heavy lifting in creating the requirements, but when push comes to shove, you better make sure you have the right experts to endorse your solution.
With your reputation on the line, it's important that you solicit the advice from the right subject matter experts. If your project manager or someone from the business assigns subject matter experts for you, make sure you vet them against the following criteria:
You might not have total control over which subject matter experts you'll work with; however, you should have a significant vote. Screen your experts carefully, paying particular attention to: intelligence, credibility and respect, availability, personality, and passion. Without all these qualities, they’re not very useful and you're wasting your time. And I don't know about you, but I don't have any spare time to waste on the wrong people.
Written by John Weathington
John Weathington is President and CEO of Excellent Management Systems, Inc., a management consultancy that helps guide organizations to achieve strategic goals, improve critical processes, and leverage the power of information. For over 20 years, John has helped clients of all sizes including an impressive list of Fortune 100 firms to include Visa, PayPal (eBay), Hewlett Packard, Sun Microsystems, Hitachi Data Systems, Cisco, and Silicon Graphics. His unique blend of leadership, management, and technical talent and skills are a rare find in the consulting arena.