Thanks @sjprior. As a tester who wants to grow their career, it’s all good and well to see skills listed in this way. In truth though, the list by itself is a bit vague and doesn’t help me to take action at all. Sorry if that sounds negative. For each point, I am more interested in ‘How?’ for a tester. All those points could apply equally to a developer or heck, a successful anybody in that case.
My brain: How do I cultivate…
- Curiosity and Question Asking?
- Good Communication?
- Problem Solving & Analytical Thinking?
- Continuous Learning?
- Coaching & Facilitating?
Now even though I’ve had 2 years experience, I still don’t think I am in a position to say whether or not I am an awesome tester. In any case, this is what I would say to anyone who is new to the testing world (with your 2016 list).
- Cultivate curiosity and question asking. For everything you are given to test, ask ‘Why’ for everything. Why is criteria developed in this way? Why isn’t it done in this other way? Why do I have to to test it this way? Why can’t we test it now but later?
- Cultivate Communication Skills. Notice when you disagree with people, how do you respond? How could you respond better? Notice when you spend too much time in meetings or calls. Can you spot where time is wasted on emailing? How do people see you? (are you approachable?)
- Cultivate Problem Solving & Analytical Thinking. How much of your work is autopilot and boredom? If you answer all of it then that’s wrong. You need to be proactive, ask yourself what areas have you not explored or applied?
- Continuous Learning. Read MoT daily, subscribe to RSS/emails in the testing world. Cem Kaner, James Bach. But don’t just read random stuff, how does it apply to your work? Keep a learning diary to keep track of your own progress.
- Coaching & Facilitating - I’m not a coach but even as an average tester like me, you can post on forums here and share your thoughts and knowledge on your testing journey. You can teach your tester colleagues how to do something better.
For 2020, I don’t know what the next top 5 or 10 skills list will be. But my hope is if anyone responds to this post, please expand and don’t just put ‘Be a problem solver’. What does that mean on a day to day basis?
I hope that has helped people here, don’t just read the list, do the list.