TestToTester

Confessions of a blogger – Episode 1


 

I guess we all try and want to be better in whatever we do and one such aspiration led me stay away from my blog for a long time now. I wanted my blog articles to be written in better English, talk about stuff very new or something that no one else (well, at least the people I know) had even thought of, better than the previous ones, longer, attract more readers and more comments, etc. The result: It has been more than 6 months and not even a single article in it. The pressure I put on myself to make my next article better than my previous ones have only made me feel awful about myself. The last 6 months have been one of the most exciting times in my life and career but I have missed to write about any one of them.

 
 

Anyways as the proverb goes "It's no use crying over spilt milk" – let me try summarizing the last 6 months in a series of posts or may be just one. I guess there are times a blogger has to realize the reasons why he/she started the blog and I guess I have.

 
 

Episode 1: Moved from Bangalore to London: I was happy, relaxed, having fun with my friends, wife, family and my favourite testers in Bangalore. As they say good thing do not last long – something popped into my mind and I kind of felt my life is getting redundant.  I wanted a change not just in terms of the job or company I worked in but also the environment I lived in. Hoping for a change is one thing but to embrace a change is a daunting task. I realized this as I started planning step by step. Which country do I move to? Which visa can I get quickly? Who have active test communities? Where are my skills required? How long will I be without a job? What can I do when I am not in a job? How much money do I need? Where will I stay? Should I sell all my stuff? How long do I have to be away from my wife, friends and parents? And most importantly is it worth all this effort? To make things more complicated I got two exciting job offers – one I would call a dream offer and the other an offer I could not refuse. It was something I was looking for a long time. I knew who my boss would be and I respected Caroline Shekar a lot for her thoughts about testing and testers. She is one of those rare Indian testers in the top hierarchy of a reputed firm who not only is interested to see a better testing community but is actually putting efforts to help testers realize their potential, priorities, challenges ahead and also educate the big bosses around on the realistic expectations from a testing team. I would have really loved to work with her. Unfortunately things around me were changing rapidly, my wife now had an assignment in the US and this added more confusion to where I am heading. By this time I had work visa from 2 countries. With a heavy heart I turned down the offer and started focusing on the country. I chose UK over US because at that moment I felt UK was right for me. Also I came across a lot of gathering events for testers, conferences, workshops in London area which made me stick to UK. This choice in country meant I had long talks with my wife (very long), friends, mentors, gurus and family to convince them and myself for the reasons behind my decision. Just when I thought I am thru with the hard task the dream offer came in. My mentor had plans of starting one of a kind exploratory testing service company in Bangalore and wanted to know if I am interested to be part of the team. Why would any sane tester let go of such an offer? I the insane tester did. I guess it's the most difficult decision I have taken after proposing to my girlfriend now my wife about 11 years back. Being the great mentor he has always been, Pradeep respected my decision and wished me all the luck in the new country. Finally, I landed in the UK last week of Oct last year. 

 
 

Did this episode teach me anything?

Move out of your comfort zone and you will be surprised what you could learn - the days leading to my day of departure from India to London were some of the most intense days I have ever been thru. The pressure of leaving behind and heading to an unknown country with a lot of uncertainty does take a toll on the mind and body.  

 
 

This only meant that I need to keep my emotions controlled and run thru loads of checklists and tasks. I had to get stuff sorted in banks, insurance firms, government offices, talk to different customer care departments, potential buyers, run thru medical check-ups, etc and had to sync up with my personal tasks of visiting friends, family, shopping, commuting, etc. There were many times when I had to change priorities on the run and make quick decisions. To summarize I guess this little period taught me a lot in planning, executing, negotiating, decision making, handling stress, multi-tasking, communicating and manage in one of the most emotionally stressful phase of my life till now. I still recollect the hundreds of threads that ran in my head parallel when I was having a nice dinner or spending time with my friends. I think I was able to lighten up only when I rested my back on seat of the plane to London.


 

End of Episode - 1

2 comments:

Darren McMillan said...

Congratulations Sharath! It's a big thing moving from your home.

As for blogging, it can sometimes be a job in itself. Share your idea's though and get feedback from them. You'll only improve yourself by doing so.

Ajay Balamurugadas said...

'Move out of your comfort zone and you will be surprised what you could learn'

Very True!
Congrats & All the Best Sharath.
Regards,
Ajay

Test with me @

Tweets