Will all the Humans in the Room Please stand up


Back in June I attended an AST (Assocation for Software Testing) Tech Meetup at Viacom. I was personally invited by one of my former bosses. As he likes to help keep me in the loop on what’s what in the Technology Industry.

It was a “star-studded” Software Testing Event. I met a really cool set of heavy hitters in the Software Testing Industry and learned about Software Training programs, i’d never even heard of.

However, my highlight of the evening was the Q & A portion, after the presentation. A Director of QA from another Company [I’m not naming], had asked the room, how could she get the Developers, at her company, to care more about their code?

Most people blurted out things like the effects of code branching between releases. Some talked about Jenkins, SVN, Tomcat and other very technical things that involve a "Technical" process. It seemed as if no one truly realized, that her question was not Technical, it was "Human". So I decided to raise my hand to speak. I explained to her the importance of talking to the Developers about how their code is a representation of them. I also advised her to explain to them, that her role in working with them, was more of a role to ensure that the code they built was well represented once it was released. I advised that if that was still not something that appealed to them, maybe the company as a whole, should look at their overall hiring process. As you would want Developers who actually care about representing themselves and the company well.

After I had spoken a lot of the people in the room had “aaah”, moments. However, it wasn’t until I said bye, to a few people that I realized the impact of my statements. A few folks were so impressed with what I had said, that they had asked me if I was currently looking for work. They were looking for leads on their QA team, and just by making that statement, I had presented myself as a leader to them. In an industry where in order to succeed you do have to be extremely technical, being a “human” in the room made me stand out.

I was quite flattered simply because, I am very Technical, but I am a Human first and I am glad that it was noticed.