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Ways to evenly engage Testers and enforce discipline throughout the Sprint

Quite often I see Agile teams where Test Engineers sit relatively idle during initial days of sprint and struggle hard to complete testing tasks towards the end of sprint. Although Scrum teams follow Agile principles and practices, still at times, teams experience huge delays in Development and Testing which result in spill over of user stories to next sprint or delay in release dates. Typically, Test Engineers focus on following activities during the first few days: 1.Understanding User Stories 2.Write Sprint Test Plan 3.Authoring Test Cases 4.Follow up on approvals (Test Plan & Test Cases)
Test Engineers are supposed to allocate initial 20-25% of sprint duration for the above mentioned tasks and then start Test Execution & Reporting. Mostly, Test Engineers author Test Plan, Test Cases and wait till Programmers deliver code for testing. The problem becomes even worse when majority of functionality is deployed to Test Environment towards the end of sprint, leaving Test Engineers…

My Last Working Day at UOL

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“Last Working Day” User Story (inspired by Agile)*: Description: As a Team Leader, I would like to move on with the rich experience & exposure gained here at UOL, so that I can improve self and the following company substantiallyover a period of time.
Acceptance Criteria: 1) Meet and greet people. 2) Acknowledge present and past colleagues with whom I worked. 3) Complete all relieving formalities. 4) Send this email L 5) Pick personal belongings and leave the office premise.
* ’ User Story’ is equivalent to Software Requirement Specifications in traditional software development models.
My career at UOL started as Member Technical in Production Engineering team (maintenance projects), continued with Senior Quality Engineer in Strategic team (long term projects) and now as Team Leader in Agile teams (Scrum & Kanban). After a long time (i.e. close to 10 years at UOL) ... I made up my mind and decided to move on for better prospects in my professional career. Today is my last working day…

My Experience during performance appraisal

Last year, after my performance appraisal I went to my big BOSS's office and seriously asked "what is that I SHOULD do to get 'E = Exceeds Expectations' in my performance appraisal?”. My big BOSS smiled and gently replied "if you DO what I ask you to DO then you will again meet my expectations!" and discussion continued for a while.

In deed, it was a healthy discussion.

Moral: 
a) When in doubt meet your mentor and discuss thinks clearly. Who knows, your interest to ask questions will help you find correct answers.

b) Don’t work for getting M (Meets Expectations) or E (Exceeds Expectations) or F (Far Exceeds Expectations) in performance appraisals. Know your strengths, bring out your hidden talent or worth; contribute as much as possible keeping organization goals in mind, without losing focus on individual’s career goals. After all … your work speaks and appraisal follows, leaving no choice to your manager.

Misconceptions that Indians have about India

1.That we are the most cultured country on the planet 2.That we are not racists 3.That Hindi is our national language 4.That Hockey is our national sport 5.That we are a democracy in essence 6.That one vote doesn’t matter 7.That if you are an IITian, you are the best Engineer 8.That if you are an IIMite, you are the best manager 9.That all politicians are corrupt 10.That all cops are dishonest 11.That none of the government officials work 12.That we worship and respect women 13.That it’s okay to litter anywhere and it is not an offence in India 14.That sex shouldn’t be discussed

What Makes You The Best Manager?

Are you mentoring or leading or managing a team for a while?

If not, you have time to revisit this article later in future. Until then, go over below links: Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapter 1 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 2 & 3 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 4 & 5 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 6 & 7 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 8 & 9 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 10 & 11 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 12 & 13 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 14 & 15 Sri Chanakya Niti Shastra Chapters 16 & 17
If yes, you are on the right page. As an individual contributor you might have done miracles in project or team. But, your past (experience and contributions) alone doesn't help you if you want to reach the next level in your profession. What got you here won’t get you there. Now, go over below points carefully and see which better explains your leadership style as a manager.
Characteristics of Best Manager:  Sets a good example.Explains t…

If Else Condition

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Would you like to look good or bad?

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Are you good or bad? It doesn't matter if you live in isolation! Well .... if you are a social animal it depends on the way you project yourself before others.
I've seen many people who are good by heart & nature but they doesn't like to exhibit the same through actions. They seem to be more comfortable being the way they act/react rather than the way they are supposed to be. This result in people around them misunderstand for their wrong actions.
Let's assume person's appearance as a cake and his/her nature as cake's flavor or taste (i.e. Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla, etc.). Below are some pictures which shows a few variants of cakes. All cakes taste good, there is no doubt about it. Now, answer below questions.
1) Which cake do you prefer to be?
2) Which cake do you prefer to eat?
For both questions, 99.99% will opt for 'first' or 'second' or .... till 'sixth'. But, none prefer 'seventh' cake. Check out ...... why?
First
Second
T…