This is the second post of PEST2 results.
What makes your team tick? (if you are one-man-army then what would make a team tick)
A common Enemy
- Team born from fighting an enemy, make people look past their personal issues and into the way for getting the job done. And after the victory (or defeat) they are closer than before, being a team.
- Enemy being:
- Project managers brilliant idea of automating everything
- Bad development practices from offsite partner creating lots of waste in testing
- Difficult or boring project tasks.
New tasks keep everyone on their toes, keeping up the excitement and united effort
- New areas to test in current project
- New challenges in current project
- New projects, entirely different from last ones
Actually, there is “I” in the team:
- Individual members need to know they are valued and respected:
- They need freedom, not detailed instructions how to do stuff. (They are not machines)
- They need their voice to be heard.
- They need to know (and feel) the their work is necessary and valued
- They need constructive feedback in order to bloom
- There is no team unless each member wants work, learn and be part of the team.
People are different and that is a good thing. But in a team they should not contradict but supplement each other, not only as specialists/skills in different areas, but also on emotional/character basis.
Knowing that other people (outside of the team, in the world) do testing as well
- Understanding that testing isn’t just ‘our thing’ but a major international craft.
- There are (awesome) people one can relate to, share stories and learn from.
- Therefore knowing that ‘testing’ isn’t some ‘end-of-the-line’ in career path, but a path with a bright future for those who want to learn and have ambition. You can move either horizontally (to more challenging projects) or vertically (from specialist to team lead or coach).
- For getting the job done quickly, efficiently.
- And for introverts, with as little communication with others as possible
- Having disposable time (explicitly given by team lead)
- for learning new stuff
- Trying new things
- Figuring out new ways to use existing tools
- For anything else that isn’t specifically project tasks and is fun to do.
Team lead must give clear feedback to members, so that there is no fear of being sacked
- People who are afraid (or paranoid) of losing their job tend to create work for themselves, so that only they can do it. And making everyone else life much more difficult.
- Those who seem to be lazy need to be confronted with the possible issue and clearly communicated what could be the cause of this and what actions to take.
Communication (and people skills)
- This was actually not much discussed during PEST2, but everyone agrees that this is also very important.