“Like working with children who had problems.”
That’s how Clyneice Chaney describes her first experience as a software testing professional.
Chaney, an invited speaker to this fall’s PNSQC conference, became a tester by accident. She was working as a manager in software development and landed a new job as a test manager.
One problem: She’d never tested before.
“My employer, Software Dynamics, needed a test manager in a hurry and, although I didn’t know how to test, I knew how to manage.”
She promised her team of four young testers that, if they gave her six months to learn the ins and outs of testing, she’d help them get what they needed to get their jobs done during her ramp-up.
It worked. “I read six books on software testing in those six months. That’s how I got started.”
It was love at first test for Chaney. “After I read all the books, I found it exciting to work with an unknown entity to see how we could make it work right. Can you break it? It was like working with children who had problems.”
That was 30 years ago and she’s never regretted the move to testing.
Her transition to a test manager on the QA speaking circuit was a bit more playful. Software Dynamics got her started by dangling a speaker’s bonus in front of her. “I thought, ‘Why not? I can make some money, let’s do this.’”
Just like testing, she found herself enjoying the presenting side of her work. One speaking engagement a year turned into two, then she added tutorials to her schedule. She also teaches certification classes.
Which leads us into her pathway to PNSQC.
She was teaching a class with her twin sister, Clareice, at a Washington, D.C., conference last year. PNSQC volunteer Phil Lew was teaching at the same venue. Lew attended their class, was impressed, invited them to lunch, and asked if Clyneice would present at PNSQC. (Her twin is an acquisitions consultant.)
“Of course I said yes!” she says.
Now employed by nonprofit consulting firm Mitre, Chaney combines software testing and organizational change in her speaking engagement repertoire. She has had considerable experience testing in agile development and has developed guidelines for mastering lean testing, particularly in agile development.
For PNSQC, she will be discussing going lean without jeopardizing quality in her presentation, Trimming Down Your QA Effort While Maintaining Quality.