I believe you think from the description that I am making nonsense in this article, right? Well, maybe just a little bit. It’s just that much is written about career choices and some of those materials are actually mind-blowing and able to change lives. I think any of us at a certain period of his life stopped for some time to re-think whether he is going the right way and what he’s doing with his life. Let’s take me for example. I’ve recently got my hands on some curious materials in Lou Adlers articles and began thinking quite much about them.
The general concept of these texts were that there are only 4 types of professions in the world: the thinker, the builder, the producer and the Improver. And they act accordingly, thus thinkers create brilliant ideas, the ones that actually matter, I mean, the builders bring them to life, improvers make them shine and glitter after additional work is done and producers bring them to the masses. A fairly rational idea, which can be applied to absolutely every business.
Where are you now?
As you keep on reading it begins to be clear that these four roles are not permanent and can blend during your personal and career growth. Let’s now get to examples, shall we?
Imagine you are just beginning your career as a tester, it’s your first day at your first job, you don’t know much yet. A senior colleague explains to you what to do, shows some tricks and it’s enough for now. You are working and nothing bothers you, but then comes time when your personal experience is giving you some tips and advises on how to improve what you have been doing and make life a bit easier. You implement your own methods and you are a little bit of an improver now. Then, with time (a huge amount for most people), you will be able to build something of your own using gained knowledge from personal experience, read literature, mistakes of coworkers and a fusion of these and lots of other factors. At that moment the builder in you is ringing your door bell. Most just stop at that achievement due to the fact not everybody is capable of generating brilliant ideas thinkers can, yet many try and, sometimes, hard effort actually pays off. So now let’s move on to quality assurance and realization that you are a tester.
What does this have to do with testing?
Well it’s a pity, yet I’ve seen lots of young and talented lads working testers without any passion or love of their work just because they fit the job requirements. This won’t be of any use for them. These youngsters really need to rethink something, quit doing what isn’t theirs just because their experience fits the vacancy. IT is a huge domain, and even QA is quite enormous, so fellows, please, stop for a second, try to memorize what you’ve already achieved, what you are good at and let your experience and cold mind (I know that people usually say let your heart guide you, but I won’t due to the fact that’s a rather foul advice, and even if they succeed we won’t be able to handle that many rock-stars and steves jobses) tell you where to head. A builder, a thinker, an improver and the producer are always needed and are of the same value to a success-oriented company so allow yourself to move in the right direction. Thus you will lead your career to the path where you are the strongest.
So although the path of some may lead them out of the testing industry let’s focus on the ones that feel it is theirs to dominate and that know they are the ultimate quality assurance tester.
The 4 in Testing
Any testing project consists of parts that can be the domain to each of these four. It is actually quite a twist, just think about it:
- Thinker – You do have to be creative while thinking out test cases
- Builder – Then you actually create the cases, don’t you?
- Improver – Tweaking cases, making them run smooth is quite the improver job, don’t you think?
- Executing them dozens or even hundreds of times is something a true producer would do.
And certainly you’ll enjoy some of these processes and the other would actually irritate you or, eventually, even piss you off. But if you would look on it from the other side it’s a splendid opportunity to find out what you are good at, focus your attention on it. Perhaps even to re-consider your job requirements with the Project Manager thus allowing ultimate success for the whole team if everybody will be doing what they are best at.