To celebrate the relentless passion of testers, BrowserStack is honoring some of the icons in the testing space—those who push the industry forward by sharing their knowledge with the community at large through their thought leadership.
Nicola Lindgren is a QA Manager with more than ten years of experience in software testing. She’s an author, blogger, vlogger, and a conference speaker who talks about testing, agile, and leadership.
Tell us a little bit about your role as a Senior QA Engineer at ustwo?
The role offers a fair bit of variety which I quite like. My primary responsibilities include setting up QA processes and guiding other teams (including my own) on how to test, setting up and maintaining test frameworks using various tools, testing API endpoints, and planning testing for upcoming features. There’s also a fair bit of clarifying requirements with clients and the team to help prevent bugs and holding feature discussions.
My secondary responsibilities include providing input to proposals to highlight risks and testing needs, reviewing CVs, interviewing candidates for roles in the tech team, and providing feedback to our recruiter.
What do you like the most about being a software tester? What inspires you?
I like the constant learning and growth that comes with it. It helps when you’re in a field as dynamic as software testing. Because I abhor the idea of being stagnant!
What are some passion projects you're currently working on?
My blog and my YouTube channel. I've been blogging since 2013 and started my YouTube channel just a few months ago - which is still a bit of an experiment. I like to share knowledge, and believe video is a better format for some ideas. As a bonus, it is helping me get out of my comfort zone!
Can you tell us about the books you've authored?
Here, I share the different paths you can take towards becoming a software tester, useful ways you can up-skill, and what I wish I knew in my first year of testing. Honestly, it's the book I wish I had when I started my career.
I wrote this book with Suman Bala, Mike Harris, Shawn Shaligram, and Phil Wong. In this, we share concrete ideas and examples of how to test various features/sites, etc.
What innovations/trends in the space of software development are you most excited about?
I'm very happy that accessibility testing is getting more attention. In a few years' time, I think we're going to look back and be surprised by why accessibility didn't become a norm earlier.
If not software testing, what would your alternate career choice be and why?
My initial plan was to become a diplomat, but that Government department wasn't hiring the year I graduated from university. Traveling around the world used to appeal to me a lot more, but today with two young children, I don't think I would want to move every few years. My best guess would be a risk analyst.
What are you reading/learning right now? What made you interested in this?
I have been re-reading parts of Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High. I genuinely feel it's important to learn to have tougher conversations, not just with regard to your professional life but also your personal life.
What's your favorite software testing quote of all time?
"Software testing is the headlights. Quality is the journey. Business outcomes are the destination." - Anne-Marie Charrett
What advice would you give to those who are interested in entering the QA space, especially women?
What's a fun fact about you that most people don't know?
I'm interested in human behavior and relationships. I recommend people read The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman and Emotional Bids by Dr. John Gottman.
While I value my career, my relationship with my husband and children is the most important thing to me, and I do what I can to be the best wife and mother I can be.
(Responses have been edited for clarity).