ReTestBash 2023 Challenges on Communication

Given the insightful talks at TestBash UK 2023 on communication, particularly focusing on leadership, mentorship, and team dynamics, we are excited to present this week’s themed communication challenges. These challenges are designed to reinforce and expand your understanding of effective communication strategies within the testing community, inspired by the wisdom shared by @tbeckford and @colormedav, @jitgo, and @tdshipley.

:speaking_head: Five Communication Challenges for the Week:

1. Rewatch and Reflect:

  • Mentorship in QA: Rewatch “Perspectives from a QA Mentor and Mentee” with Tamoya Beckford and Davina Scott. Consider the symbiotic growth of both mentor and mentee and discuss how you can implement or improve mentorship programs in your organization.
  • Balancing Speed and Quality: Rewatch Jitesh Gosai’s “Speed vs Quality: Can You Have Both?” Reflect on the bottlenecks in your current workflows and brainstorm ways to alleviate them without compromising quality.
  • Mastering the Art of Persuasion: Rewatch “The Art of Persuasion for Testers” by Thomas Shipley. Contemplate the challenges you face while introducing new ideas to your team. Identify instances where persuasion was necessary and reflect on the approach used. Consider how understanding your team’s motivations and resistance can aid in effective persuasion.

2. Poll:
After absorbing insights from Tamoya Beckford, Davina Scott, and Jitesh Gosai, we’re interested in your opinions.

[Multiple Choice - Choose all that apply]

Which aspects of communication and leadership do you find most challenging in your role?

  • Establishing effective mentorship programs.
  • Identifying and alleviating bottlenecks in workflows.
  • Balancing speed and quality in project delivery.
  • Persuading team members to adopt new methodologies.
0 voters

3. Reflections on Effective Communication in Your Teams:

  • How do communication dynamics currently shape your team’s productivity?
  • What strategies have you employed to convince your team to adopt new ideas or methodologies?

Share your insights and experiences in reply to this post.

4. Team Activities:

  • Mentorship Role-play: Inspired by Tamoya and Davina’s insights, simulate a mentor-mentee relationship with a colleague. Afterwards, discuss the learnings and potential improvements in your current mentorship approach.
  • The Bottleneck Game: Based on Jitesh’s talk, identify a common project and list potential bottlenecks. Role-play scenarios to address these bottlenecks creatively, focusing on maintaining quality.

Share the outcomes of these activities by replying to this post.

5. Deep Dive Challenge:
Communication Deep Dive Challenge: Mastering Digital Persuasion

Drawing from Thomas Shipley’s activity, “To BDD or Not to BDD That is The Question,” participants practised persuasion techniques while discussing BDD’s (Behaviour Driven Development) merits. With the added layer of digital communication, which lacks many face-to-face cues, how can we effectively persuade others? Let’s delve deeper into persuasion strategies optimised for online communications.

Objective: Craft a compelling argument for or against the use of “Exploratory Testing” in modern software development, and post it on the forum. Assess your methods and responses, and reflect on the differences between in-person and online persuasion.


Research (30 minutes):

  • Dive into Exploratory Testing. Seek to identify its pros and cons, its applications, and its critics.

Formulate Your Argument (45 minutes):

  • Decide whether you’re advocating for or against Exploratory Testing.
  • Remember to structure your argument with an introduction, main points with evidence, and a conclusion.
  • Consider what persuasive techniques can be most effective in a written online format.

Post Your Argument (15 minutes):

  • Once you’ve formulated your argument, post it to the community in reply to this thread

Engage and Reflect (Ongoing):

  • Engage with responses from other community members. Respond to questions, counter-arguments, and feedback.
  • Reflect on this process. How does persuading in a digital format differ from the in-person activity you experienced at Testbash? What unique challenges or advantages did you encounter?

Share Your Reflections (10 minutes):

  • After a few days, post a reflection on this deep dive challenge.
  • Share what you learned, how the community’s feedback influenced your perspective, and any changes you’d make to your argument now.


Digital communication changes the landscape of persuasion. Without body language, tone, or real-time back-and-forth discussions, our strategies need to evolve. This challenge allowed us to adapt, understand, and optimise our persuasive techniques for online environments.

Key Takeaways:

  • Digital persuasion requires clarity and structure.
  • Engaging and understanding counterarguments is crucial.
  • Reflecting on online discussions helps refine our persuasive techniques for future interactions.
  • The online format can offer a broader range of feedback and insights than face-to-face interactions.

Why Take Part?

  • Hone Your Skills: These activities provide a space to practice and refine crucial communication skills that extend beyond everyday interactions.
  • Learn from Peers: Sharing your experiences allows for collective learning, offering new perspectives or strategies you might not have considered.
  • Prepare for Future AMAs: Engaging deeply with these themes will prime you for participation in upcoming AMA sessions at ReTestBash
  • Foster Leadership Qualities: Effective communication is key to leadership. These challenges encourage qualities like empathy, clarity, and persuasive ability, which are essential for any leader in the tech space.

Join us for ReTestBash on 2nd November as we continue to explore these themes and prepare for more enriching discussions!

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