The idea of being a Quality Coach or starting a Quality Coach program can seem overwhelming. Where do you actually start?
You might get advice like the one above from the King in Alice in Wonderland gave which can seem profound, but in concrete terms, not very helpful!
The scope of quality can appear never-ending, and is highly subjective, making it a topic difficult to discuss and understand fully. Quality also keeps changing, making it hard to know if we are heading in the right direction and if we have it. There’s the added complexity of gaining suitable support in terms of time and budget. Worse, failing to get ‘it right’ can lead to future lack of support setting you backwards not forwards. It’s enough to for anyone to catch a dose of analysis paralysis!
There’s good news! Firstly, it’s not up to only you to decide where to start, that decision belongs to the team.
For quality to be a team responsibility, the decision where to start is the teams, not only the quality coaches. Anne-Marie Charrett
Instead, your role at this point, is to generate and facilitate this discussion in a way that helps focus the team.
Secondly, sometimes it doesn’t matter where you start, it’s the act of starting. Making this kickoff low cost, means the impact of say pushback is minimised. Plus, the upside is hugely valuable. You begin to learn more about your team, what they value and their concerns. Even the act of pushback is a valuable objection to collect.
Conversations like the above can be sufficient to generate and point to potential next steps and act as a guide to what your team is passionate about.
Want ways to motivate your team about quality? Focus on something they’re interested in! Author
Below are 13 low cost ideas aimed at generating discussion on quality or a related topic. The ideas is to get a better understanding of the state of quality and people’s perception of that. By gathering and sharing this information with your team it may help your team (yes, its not only your decision!) to decide where to start.
- Plan a Lean Coffee on Quality/Testing/Infrastructure/SpeedToMarket/
- Pair with a developer/Product Owner
- Research and Analyse bugs found
- Start collecting data on something you don’t know about
- Create a Whiteboard for Quality Improvement
- Take someone out for coffee and chat about what bugs them
- Ask to to be taught
- Suggest the theme for a retro be Quality
- Define Terms (Unit, Integration, System, API)
- Create a survey for the team
- Roles & Responsibilities Workshop on Quality Coach
- Ask for personal feedback
- Share a blog post on a topic around quality
Do you have any low-cost ideas you have found worked for you? Please share!
*This blog post is an extract of my Quality Coaching book.