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In the Danger Zone

Kenny Loggins said it best.

Last night I stepped right into the 'danger zone.' I attended a roundtable on testing arranged by a recruitment agency, surrounded by big financial services test management and even those representing 'big' consultancy, amongst others. I would not usually attend something like this to be honest, out of my usual bubble.

I have endeavoured this year to talk about testing at a range of events, whether they be non testing specific or as this occasion, an event which is outside of the sphere of my usual haunts. One of my prevailing feelings after a TestBash (for example) is that it was great but for the most part confirmed my world view.

Three questions were posed.
  1. What is the value of a tester?
  2. What are testers accountable for?
  3. What is your opinion on the future of testing?
I thought I would note what my response was for each. Here it is:



Also, for download:

http://www.xmind.net/m/YuK2

As there were three questions, I'll note my three takeaways from the session:
  1. We, as testers, often still talk about cost and not value. As in 'if this bug would have got through, it would have cost X' rather than 'the team delivered revenue generating feature with a value of Y.' Lets try more positive, team based language.
  2. The question 'should testers be embedded in teams?' was explored. My world has been exactly that for the last four or five years. It was a timely reminder that not all organisations value that arrangement, therefore the appreciation of a testers value by other disciplines is given less opportunity to grow.
  3. Community, specifically that which is external to organisations, is our key to moving testing forward. I note some of the debate recently about automation, while painful for some, is a great example of challenge, clarification and hopefully soon, understanding.
Attend something you might usually not. I believe it's worth it.

Comments

  1. This post is a good reminder that we don't all come from the same background and breaking out of the norm is a good thing. It lets us come back to the roots and reevaluate. I've done a similar thing recently. I wish you the best of luck in further exploring this!

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