I Work in the Field of Mental Health

An amazed gaze, often without an expectation, follows when I answer that one question. What do you do Antti? Or what does your firm do?

I work in the field of mental health.

Do you know that feeling when the app or software that you are trying to use just won’t work? How frustrating can it be? Argh!

Our work is to help software developers towards more spectacular results. We catch the bugs before they can get underfoot.

That is why I say that testing is actually mental health treatment. Everyone is happier when the job is done.

I have tried several kinds of elevator speeches in front of thousands of strangers during the years. The formula that works is surprisingly simple.

  1. Opening: The opening strikes a chord with curiosity, and formulates us a shared platform. Mental health is a strange concept. In addition, everyone is frustrated when the software does not work. It is easy to grasp.
  2. Depiction: The matter itself answers the question of ‘How do I work?’. It allows an opportunity to tell that a tester is a hawk-eyed hunter, whose work results are beneficial to us all.
  3. Realization: The ending crystallizes what we actually do. But at the same time it draws the ends of the string together. The story could be concluded with the words “That is why testing is mental health work”.

Testing is seldom the sexiest business at the evening table. And it won’t become it, unless we first learn to tell about our work in a catchy way. In a way that allows lay people to realize what it is about.

Software testing

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