• TLF

July 2019

Updated: Oct 3, 2019

Our July event was the first forum under the new TLF brand and it was a nervous time for the Leadership Team as we weren't sure how the shift from IT Assurance would be received. We're very pleased to say that the shift in focus to include broader technology concepts, wellness in the workplace and personal performance was well received and we had great feedback from new and former members alike. The agenda can be seen below:

Morning Workshop

How to Achieve High Performance in the Workplace

Delivered by Harry Vazanias - Enfuse Group

This workshop is for any IT Professional wanting to understand how they and their teams can become amazing.

The workshop introduces key behavioural science concepts and insights to equip you with the knowledge needed to be high performers.

1.What does the workshop do?

Introduces key concepts and techniques based on established research and models on individual and team performance. Much of the content is based on Behavioural Science research

2.What does the workshop not do?

The course does not make you a Behavioural Scientist! It simply introduces insights, tools and techniques to help you be more effective

Afternoon Sessions

You have failed me for the last time, Test Manager!

You arrive at a new job and the first project you are given needs the testing phase improving under the watchful eyes of the company CIO. I will share with you how we worked and communicated to bring ‘testing’ back from the Dark Side.

Stuart Pates

A laid back non-techy testing veteran who has being involved in testing for 20+ years in a wide variety of roles. A member of the team sending the first ever purchase using the red button on Sky’s set-top-box to being the only testing professional testing a Social Services migration he is now at the forefront of Aviva’s biggest ever IT Project. Improving People is a passion both in the office and at home with vast experience as a foster parent and youth sports coach.

Case Study: Testing without Testers

The session will consist of two parts:

1. A presentation of a case study: implementation of an accounting calculation engine with no testers i.e. no resources trained in testing or career testers.

2. A round table discussion of the case study including the possibilities and limitations of testing without testers.

The presentation will cover a recent global implementation programme where no test resources were used. All testing was performed by business analysts or subject matter experts from outside the programme. The round table discussion will give participants an opportunity ask questions and discuss similar programmes or implementations performed by other practitioners.

The discussion will also provide an opportunity to talk through how this may or may not fit with the future direction of testing and assurance.

Max Latey

​A seasoned Senior Test Professional with a wealth of experience.

How to Harness the Power of Storytelling in Business

This workshop will provide you with an enhanced ability to ensure your key messages are understood, acted upon, and gain traction with your stakeholders

What we cover: In a highly interactive, practical and pragmatic workshop, we will explore…

• Why storytelling and narrative approaches work

• How we can learn from Hollywood and Homer

• When to deploy storytelling techniques

• What is in the DNA of an effective story

• How to turn cynics into infectious advocates

…......And give you a chance to practice your new found skills.

Chris Carey

Chris has over 33 years of experience in employee communications and people development, including 23 years as managing director of award-winning employee engagement specialists, Axiom. Chris has successfully led a large number of global employee engagement campaigns with some of the world’s leading companies in a wide-variety of business sectors, including IT, Engineering, Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals, Retail, Manufacturing, Travel, and Financial Services.

Chris’ passion is to help client organisations achieve their full potential, through the actions of their own better engaged, aligned and motivated workforce. His experience and track-record, allied to his detailed knowledge of best practice, means he is frequently asked to personally coach senior people in client organisations, including Anglo American, AstraZeneca and Virgin.

Chris specialises in helping leaders to deliver clear, concise and compelling communications in all sorts of business settings from one-to-one communication through to presentations to large groups of people, often through storytelling or narrative techniques.

An accomplished and respected conference facilitator, his advice on how to create and deliver highly interactive events and impactful presentations is much sought after and forms part of a popular book he has written and published called ‘How to be a better communicator’ which is now in its second edition.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered over 30 different workshops to help enhance the communication and engagement skills of leaders, the carefully selected content of which often underpins his public speaking engagements.

Diversity & Inclusion: does it matter?

“Diversity & Inclusion (D&I)” is a hot topic on many corporate agendas, but what do you think about it? We are living in a time when expanding our view of what ‘good’ looks like from an employee perspective puts pressure on day to day decision making in new ways. The way we recruit, to the way we promote, through to how we talk to those deciding to leave our organizations and all the interaction points in between; the employee journey is under a microscope and no two companies are doing it exactly the same.

This session will focus briefly on highlighting key points within the D&I space from a strategic benefits perspective as well as touch upon some of the less tangibles of D&I programme management. It will then open up into an interactive discussion with an aim to hear support, constructive criticism as well as the ‘I just don’t know’ opinions in the group.

Theresa hopes to cover 2 or 3 of the topics below as a facilitated discussion driven by input from the session attendees.

• Equity vs equality

• Flexible working

• Recruitment & attrition targets

• Employee Resource Groups/Networks

• Culture

Theresa Palmer

Theresa’s career has spanned nearly 20 years in the technology industry having held posts in finance, account and relationship management, customer success and D&I. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire, USA and an MBA with a focus in Finance and Organizational Behaviour from the University of Massachusetts, USA.

In her spare time Theresa likes photography, cake decorating, travel and visiting family in the States. Theresa lives with her husband James and her two young sons Evan (5) and Luke (3). Much of her attention outside of work these days is focused on enjoying family life and keeping up with her two lively boys!

Working Towards a Useful Certification Scheme for Testers

The ISTQB testing certification scheme is popular, but often-criticise because it is rather one-dimensional, unresponsive to the real world, theoretical, rather than practical and examinations are largely memory-tests requiring little insight or real-world experience. In this session, Paul describes a business-driven initiative to define a skills framework, independent of and not-overlapping with ISTQB, but that is practically oriented, focused on individual and team capability, with an emphasis on employer ownership, peer-coaching and mentoring and alignment with employer/employee objectives.

Paul Gerrard

Paul Gerrard is a consultant, teacher, author, webmaster, programmer, tester, conference speaker, rowing coach and publisher. He has conducted consulting assignments in all aspects of software testing and quality assurance, specialising in test assurance. He has presented keynote talks and tutorials at testing conferences across Europe, the USA, Australia, South Africa and occasionally won awards for them.

Educated at the universities of Oxford and Imperial College London, he is a Principal of Gerrard Consulting Limited, the host of the Assurance Leadership Forum and a business coach for Enterprising Macclesfield. He was the Programme Chair for the 2014 EuroSTAR conference in Dublin, in 2010 he won the EuroSTAR Testing Excellence Award, in 2013 he won the inaugural TESTA Lifetime Achievement Award and he won the ISTQB Testing Excellence Award in 2018.

He’s currently working with an Irish government agency to create a future skills framework for software testers.

The Wisdom of your Why

We're drowning in information but we're starving for wisdom, the wisdom that comes when you start getting clear not just about what you want in life, but why you want it.

Over the years many of you may have put together goal focused personal development plans whether that be at your workplace or as part of a personal practice. In this session we would like to introduce you to a dynamic goal planning technique which not only helps you gain clarity on what you want, but also supports you to manage your energy over the longer term to maintain motivation towards achieving your goals.

The benefits of goal planning in this flexible way becomes especially clear when a myriad of distractions pull your attention in many directions continuously. By initially constructing your plan using the wisdom of the why, and subsequently revisiting your plan regularly you can amend either the goal, the why, or the actions as changes occur.

A bit like agile delivery!

Come along with a goal or outcome you would like to focus on; this can be anything important to you from moving to a new house, losing weight, to being promoted at work, to eating more healthfully, to getting a new job, to giving up smoking. The more challenging you find it to achieve the goal the more powerful this process is. Leave with a new way of thinking about personal goal management

Jen and Phil Wheeler: Testing Professionals

Jen Wheeler

Jennifer has worked in technical recruitment since 1998, she was part of the team growing a successful software Testing Consultancy in the late 1990’s.

Since then along with her team, Jennifer has worked with hundreds of companies supplying market information, advising on skills availability, building appropriate teams and supporting team members.

Philip Wheeler MBA

An experienced IT Programme Manager, Philip has specialised in delivered complex business Transformation Programmes for over 25 years following a career in the British Army.

Commercially aware Philip has managed complex Agile deliveries across Product and IT Transformation. With budgets up to £60 million, Philip is practiced delivering complex work with up to 8 inter-dependent Product teams.

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