Project Management

The Music of Agile Testing

Paul Carvalho is dedicated to helping development teams deliver high levels of quality with confidence. He inspires collaborative, agile, test-infected teams with a holistic approach to quality. Paul launched the company, Quality Driven Inc, to bring his quality development experience and knowledge to individuals and organizations through consulting, training, coaching, writing and speaking internationally. Paul is passionate about understanding human ecosystems for delivering great products that satisfy and delight customers, which he finds to be a natural fit with the agile community. Connect with him through and say hello on Twitter @can_test.

Topics: Agile, Quality, Testing/Test Management

Agile testing is commonly mistaken as only referring to the Quality Assurance (QA)/testers on the team. This is a destructive, limited view of this critical agile development piece. That’s why when I conduct my workshops on testing, I always start with the basics:

  1. Testing is based in the Scientific Method
  2. People need to collaborate for testing to be most effective

The first part we learned in elementary school. We need gentle nudges to help us recall how to think clearly, scientifically, about how to learn from systems of things. The latter part is trickier and goes against everything we learned in school about independent work. That is, in school we are taught to do our own work independently--or get punished as cheaters. In the real world, that is a recipe for disaster. It is only through collaborative pairing of minds and perspectives that we can hope to succeed in delivering quality products and services in a timely manner.

Great testing requires a whole-team approach. So when I talk about “agile testing”, I think of all the activities that every project team member does to ensure their customers and users are more than happy with the value received. This article places the emphasis on the often neglected, misunderstood and essential collaboration piece.

Symphony or Cacophony?
Development work involves layers and layers of …

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"In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, bloodshed - but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."

- Orson Welles, The Third Man