Asking are you Okay is Not Okay

October 13, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Requirements Gathering Tips 

If you feel tempted to ask your client if they are Okay with what you have stated think again. This Post considers the risk of using the word Okay.

For anyone who is a parent you are taught early on that the use of the word OK with your child leads to 2 responses:

  1. Yes I am OK because I have to agree with you because you don’t care and I am not happy about it.
  2. Since you asked, I am not OK and would like to change the following.

As a Business Analyst you need to realize that when you ask a client if they are OK with what is going on you are either giving them control of the present situation or will get a useless confirmation of agreement that does not state how they truly feel. So don’t use the word Okay!

Reasons for not using Okay!

  1. You want to maintain control of the discussion or meeting. By asking are you Okay you give the client the opportunity to vent on anything they want about the project.
  2. You want to get a truthful response from your client. Better to ask the client if they agree with what is stated than an emotional are you Okay with what is stated.

So remember the next time you are tempted to ask a client if they are OK, don’t.