It has always been my ambition to be manager of a (testing) company. And I achieved that a couple of years ago. So far so good… But then something strange happened: I gradually realised that I wasn’t happy being a manager and, of course, people started noticing it.
Why I wasn’t happy? Although we discussed testing most of the time, testing slipped away from me and I started to miss the actual testing in my daily work. And I felt left out: everyone at my company was testing, except me!
Time for a drastic career change and go back to being a tester again!
Those that have worked with me for (quite) a while – without exception – told me it was great that I joined the testing ranks again and never questioned my new/old position or decision. Some even said that I should have never left the ranks in the first place… Of course, there were others that immediately asked questions like : “When are you leaving?” “Have you found a new job?” “Doesn’t it feel like a demotion and major set-back?”.
My answer was and is simple: there is no reason (yet) to leave. My company is offering me what I want: challenges in testing. By stepping up to those challenges and “walk the talk (again)”, the questions automatically seem to stop…
Several colleagues and (test) friends suggested – independent from each other – that it could make a nice blog series writing about a “successful journey” from manager to tester. It is going to be fun, they claimed, since most “successful journeys” cover the opposite direction.
So, I decided to give it a go. Reason: my last blog post is several months old, the journey is worth writing about (I think) and I hope I can inspire some of you to do what you need to do: make sure that you keep doing – or go back to – what you like, what you’re good at and what gives you energy!
Luckily, I never completely let testing go, so I was aware that a tester needs to be a one-stop-test-shop for the projects and the teams you participate in.
You have to make sure that you quickly contribute – in any context – the best way you can to your team or project. Whoever your customer is, you need to be able to help them, support them and ensure they get the test service they need.
By the way, tester or test service to me is a broad concept: as long as it covers an aspect or service slightly related to testing, I tend to consider it a tester’s job. Well, at least supporting it…
Turns out that my experience enables me to “get in the helicopter” every now and then and by doing so, I get a quick view of the “world” and am able to give advice that is in line with the facts.
So far so good, I kicked off a new category in my blog. Hope you’ll enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing them. Feel free to provide feedback (positive, negative, thums-up, thums-down, smileys, frowneys,.. )! I really like being a tester again, no regrets whatsoever. Since I have constant access to the magic of testing, there is inspiration enough for new posts! Next one might be about test automation, testing in Agile/SCRUM teams or both.
La plus perdue de toutes les journées est celle où l’on n’a pas testé.
(paraphrased – Sebastian Roch Nicolas Chamfort, Maximes et Pensées)