This is a short post as I want to get something out there tonight, but suffice to say that my first Testbash visit was fantastic, and I dont want to miss out on the opportunity to tell you why.
If I said that the morning session from yesterday was an absolute eye opener, I would not be exaggerating. “Building Quality in With Distributed Teams – Lisa Crispin & Abby Bangser” was the name of the session and I have to say that I was totally unprepared for the format and what I would take away from it.
I had in my mind a session where Lisa and Abby would be telling us about their experiences and we would probably have a Q&A time and share our problems etc. But no. It was much more fun than that! We split into two groups, and each group then split into two halves, with one half being the onshore team, and the other the offshore team. I deliberately chose to be in the offshore team to experience what it would be like. We were physically located in a different room, and had restrictions on how and when we could communicate. There were 3 sprints to perform tasks, with all decisions coming from the onshore team. I think it is fair to say that all of us in the offshore team were amazed at how little information we received, the assumptions that were made about how much we knew, the fact that we didnt really know what the bigger picture was and how it felt as though we were just being given scraps of work to do.
In a few weeks I will do this justice in more detail, but I must share that the biggest takeaway for me is that by putting yourself in someone else’s shoes, you can learn an immense amount about their situation. This can apply to anyone working with distributed teams, and as testers we can also put ourselves in the role of the end user, or the BA, or the developer to understand their pressures and focus. A lot of food for thought, thank you Lisa and Abby!
Today’s conference day was full of great talks too, and I love the fact that I can come away with practical ideas to try back at work (as well as the conference T-shirt and other goodies!).
So – more to come as I have a number of ideas that require more work after the last 2 days, so watch this space!