Leeds Testing Atelier VIII

Last week I was lucky enough to go to the Leeds Testing Atelier which was hosted, once again at the Wharf Chambers in Leeds.

This was the 8th Atelier and the fourth (I think) that is been to. If you’ve not been along before then I highly recommend it as a conference, it’s a very unusual meet up – partially because of the informality of the event (did I mention it was hosted in a bar/music venue) but also because of the wide range of topics and speakers. Although centred in testing, the organisers understand that quality comes from a wide range of interpersonal, technical, and communication techniques and they encourage sessions on these topics at the event. I debuted my Communication talk at the event, but more on that later.

The first talk of the day I went to was The Sleepy Tester by Hannah Prestwell. Hannah’s talk was inspired by a book called Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker, it’s a book I’ve heard from before and I really need to add to my reading list.

Hannah talked to us about the importance of getting enough sleep, the value of sleep in forming memories and learning, and it’s value in emotionally reflecting on recent events. It turns out the phrase “sleep of it” really is based in science.

The next talk I went to was Imposter Syndrome by Beth North. Beth had the outstanding idea of creating imposter personas to identify the different ways Imposter Syndrome can impact people. It was a great talk and really engaged a lot of people in the audience (myself included). I had the sudden urge to run out half way through and update my slides to include her great ideas.

I spoke downstairs next. My talk was entitled Performance Testing Your Communication and I spoke about various ways of monitoring and maintaining safety in a conversations as well as how to influence people around you by understanding their personality and values. I was quite pleased with how it went, especially as this was the first time I’d done this talk outside work and I was delighted to see the tweets roll in afterwards.

The final talk I saw (I had to head back to the office for the afternoon) was a lightening talk by Sophie Weston about lightening talks. In house presentations is a topic very close to my heart. Not only do I think they’re a great way to share knowledge but doing internal presentations was how I got started before I moved onto external conferences – I can’t think of a better way to boost your confidence. I’m definitely going to take a few of her tips back to the office to see if we can use them to improve ours!

The team stayed later, really enjoying their afternoon sessions and talks. I went back to an afternoon in the office but really enjoyed my morning – the organisers were a great high and really made me feel welcome and looked after (especially when I had projector woes).

A huge thanks to the Atelier Gang – I hope to see you all next time!

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