From Shy Introvert to Influential Tester with Raj Subrameyer

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About This Episode:

In today's episode, we have a very special guest, Raj Subrameyer, a senior QA manager, TEDx speaker, and author. Raj will share invaluable insights on personal branding, building successful QA teams from scratch, and the power of automation in testing. With decades of experience in leadership roles and a passion for helping individuals excel in their careers, Raj's expertise will surely inspire and motivate you. So grab your favorite pair of headphones and get ready to dive into this episode full of practical strategies and actionable advice to take your automation game to the next level. Listen up!

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About Raj Subrameyer

Raj Subrameyer

Raj Subrameyer is a Senior QA Manager, ICF Certified Tech Career and Leadership Coach, International Speaker, and Author. He has spent decades leading teams in huge organizations and start-up companies. He also has over 2000 hours and 100+ clients' worth of coaching experience, helping mid to senior-level and C-Suite Executives to overcome their struggles, face obstacles, navigate their career path, and deal with their insecurities to become influential leaders. His specialty is using his experiences and strategies backed by neuroscience to guide professionals to maximize their opportunities and discover their zone of genius.

He has given multiple TEDx talks and is a sought-after speaker at various conferences and has been featured in numerous TV news segments, podcasts, and publications, including CBS, BBC, FOX, NPR, NBC, Entrepreneur, CEOWorld Magazine, CIO and Authority Magazine, Career Addict, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success and The Good Men Project. He also wrote a best-selling book called “Skyrocket Your Career,” which hit #5 on the Amazon bestseller list and also won the Readers’ Favorite Silver medal for best nonfiction book in 2021.

His expertise includes career advancement, leadership, motivation, productivity, mental health, diversity & inclusion, and entrepreneurship. In his spare time, he loves traveling and enjoying craft beer.

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[00:00:00] Raj Subrameyer I originally come from the southern part of India, from a place called Chennai, and I grew up as a really shy introvert kid. Then, this kind of continued throughout my childhood and until my second year of my undergrad. And then I had this awakening moment which I tell in detail in my book and a lot of my other talks as well. But the summary is I came to a realization that I was selling myself short. I was letting other people's opinions be my reality and I was not believing in my own skill sets. And since then, fast forwarding to 2023, I've taken gradual steps to try out so many different things and figure out what my passion is, and what value it brings people.

[00:00:48] Get ready to discover the most actionable end-to-end automation advice from some of the smartest testers on the planet. Hey, I'm Joe Colantonio, host of the Test Guild Automation Podcast, and my goal is to help you succeed with creating automation awesomeness.

[00:01:13] Joe Colantonio Hey, it's Joe, and welcome to another episode of the Test Guild Automation Podcast. And today, we'll be talking with Raj all about Leadership and Growth for Testers. I finally got to meet Raj in person at QA or the Highway, and he gave a fantastic keynote on how to approach your tech career with an entrepreneurial mindset. I did want to dive into those types of topics. But he also has hands-on experience running teams and building them from the ground up. Really excited to have him on the show. If you don't know, Raj is a senior QA manager, ICF Certified tech career and leadership coach, international speaker, and author, he is the author of the book Skyrocket Your Career. If you don't have it, definitely get it. Awesome book. And he has spent decades leading teams and huge organizations and startup companies. He has over 200 hours and 100 clients' worth of coaching experience, so he knows his stuff all the way from mid to senior level in C-suite executives to overcome their struggles, facing obstacles, navigating the career path, and how to deal with insecurities to become influential leaders. And this is more important now than ever, especially in the testing space. He also specializes in using his experience and strategies backed by neuroscience to guide professionals to maximize their opportunities and discover the zone of genius. I could go on and on. He also has given multiple TEDx Talks and he's a sought-after speaker at various conferences. Like I said, we finally met face to face at QA or the Highway. There's a bunch of different things he's spoken up. Like I said, definitely check out his book after this podcast. I have a link to it in the show notes and really excited to have Raj's background. If you really want to skyrocket your career and really take on more of a leadership role in testing how to better your career, whatever. And also some tips on starting maybe QA from the ground up or testing from the ground up. This is the episode for you. You don't want to miss it. Check it out.

[00:03:09] This episode of the TestGuild Automation Podcast is sponsored by the Test Guild. Test Guild offers amazing partnership plans that cater to your brand awareness, lead generation, and thought leadership goals to get your products and services in front of your ideal target audience. Our satisfied clients rave about the results they've seen from partnering with us from boosted event attendance to impressive ROI. Visit our website and let's talk about how Test Guild could take your brand to the next level. Head on over to TestGuild.info and let's talk.

[00:03:43] Joe Colantonio Hey, Raj. Welcome back to The Guild.

[00:03:47] Raj Subrameyer Hey, thanks for having me. Super excited to be here.

[00:03:50] Joe Colantonio Really excited to have you. As I said, we finally got to meet face-to-face at the QA or the Highway. You gave an excellent keynote, and I thought we'd dive into those. Before we do Raj, really curious to know for people who haven't heard our previous podcast episodes, maybe take us on a little journey of where you started, like how you became this influencer and where you found out a lot of the topics and a lot of the key points I'm going to pull out of this podcast to show people how they become leaders and use more of an entrepreneurial mindset within their careers.

[00:04:20] Joe Colantonio Yeah, let's set some context for your listeners and viewers as well. Right now if you see me, people think, Man, he's giving all these talks and he doesn't have fear of speaking, but I didn't start out that way. I originally come from the southern part of India, from a place called Chennai, and I grew up as a really shy introvert kid. And you're like talking to a girl, but feel like I'm going to get a nervous breakdown times that kind of wreck. And then, this kind of continued throughout my childhood and until my second year of my undergrad. And then, I had this awakening moment which I tell in detail in my book and a lot of my other talks as well. But the summary is I came to a realization that I was selling myself short. I was letting other people's opinions be my reality and I was not believing in my own skillset. So this was way back when I was a trainee. And then I decided, you know what? I hate being like this. I need to make a change. Since then, fast forwarding to 2023, I've taken gradual steps to try out so many different things to figure out what my passion is, and what value I bring to people. And that's what has gotten me into all these things TEDx Talks, books, and then working for startups and stuff like that. So that's kind of a very fast, high-level overview of how my life transitioned from a shy introvert kid into who I am today and helping a lot of people.

[00:05:53] Joe Colantonio Awesome. Why do you think that's important for people listening? Do you think that a lot of people still struggle where you may have struggled with or have you seen I know you've coached a lot of people, what is maybe the number one thing that is blocking people from achieving some of the successes you've had?

[00:06:08] Raj Subrameyer I think the number one problem, which I've seen based on my personal experience and coaching a lot of other folks as well, is that people let other people's identities define who they are. What do I mean by that? When you're growing up, there's always going to be people around you saying, Hey, you have to become a tester, you have to become the developer. You know what? Masters is a really good thing for you. You have people around you saying what's good for you. It's their view thinking about, okay, what is actually good for yourself based on your skill sets and your interest. People pay attention to the noise around them. And what happens is they try different things without even thinking about whether it's the right thing for them to do. And I think that's the number one problem that I see in people. And that's why the people I coached are also who I label as the underdogs where society has labeled them as not good enough and they don't matter. But then I proved to them that they had the skillset and then amplified their skill. That's what I do and that's what my purpose is. So coming back to your question, I think the number one thing is the belief system and letting other people's opinions impact you. If you start to cognizantly try to make your own decisions instead of thinking about what other people need from you, that's when the real transformation happens.

[00:07:33] Joe Colantonio Raj, what do you say about the saying, it's popular, follow your passion? Do you believe it's following your passion or is it getting good at something because you're good at it? It becomes your passion. Because obviously, what I'm doing was my passion when I started. But over time, I'm like, oh, I'm competent in this. I am passionate about it. What do you see? Is it passion first or is it competency first which then leads to passion?

[00:07:56] Raj Subrameyer For me more than that, I think it's the first thing is being open to opportunities for me, being open to things. I think that's where it starts. When you're open to trying out different things, some things are going to work out, and some things are not going to work out, but either way, you're going to learn something, and then it opens the doors for other opportunities and then you learn other things. And that's how between your career and my career have been like that. For example, I started off as a developer, then a tester, then I've been a developer evangelist and I've been a consultant, and then, as a speaker, even I didn't set out to be a speaker author, but then I was open to opportunities. When you're open to opportunities, then you figure out what you're passionate about and your passion actually changes based on the season. So every two years or three years, when you see another opportunity, they will become passionate about something else. And that's how life is. So start with being open-minded, number one. Then, you've become passionate about something, and once you're passionate about something, then you have to be competent enough to actually do that. And that's when you try to become the expert in that particular field with so many resources and things you could do, which we could at least talk about. And that's kind of the full circle. And it's a never-ending journey, always being open-minded and then, being passionate and then being competent. So it's like a loop throughout your life.

[00:09:15] Joe Colantonio Nice. How do you know how open you should be? Is it fear? Is fear a good indicator you probably should be doing? Because I was like, as we said, I gave the first keynote I ever did at QA or the Highway. My first thing was like, Say no, say no, say no, say no. I said, I'll just do X. I've never done it. And that fear a lot of times people say, Oh, trust your fear and go with it. What are your thoughts? You can be open to everything. But how do you know this is right for me at this point in time?

[00:09:40] Joe Colantonio The funny thing is, you don't know what you don't know. For example, I never knew that I could give a TEDx Talk where you have to memorize 15 minutes of words, and you had to use all these complicated words that you actually to people's emotions and stuff. I never knew I was capable of that. But then when you start preparing for it, that's when you start realizing whether it's a good failure or not. This is how life is. In the sense from point A, you go to point B. If point B didn't work out, then you've got a point C, if point C doesn't work out, then come back to point B, then now go to C one, C two. That's how it is. It's like a tree structure. That's what they would say. And you never know what you don't know. My advice based on my experience would be is take small, small steps to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Only when you do that, you find out different opportunities that can level up your career and your personal life as well. Against small, small steps, you don't have to do drastic changes in your life. And then once you make a small step, that's when you realize what your true potential is. This one I tell people, there's a beauty becoming uncomfortable to get comfortable. There's a beauty in getting uncomfortable to get comfortable. And that's what we need to think about and use fear as a fuel to drive you. It's something that consumes you. I know it's easier said than done, but it just takes practice. It starts with one thing. Then if you can continuously start training your mind this way, then fear of driving stuff will consume you and being an obstacle for your growth.

[00:11:27] Joe Colantonio Absolutely. I love it. And as being testers, I guess you could tree your life like exploratory testing, where you run these little tests, you get feedback and say, Oh, okay, maybe that didn't work. That was flaky. Let me go with the test that's giving me more positive results or something. I don't know.

[00:11:41] Raj Subrameyer Exactly. Yeah, exactly. You focus on one thing, learn about it, and then you get ideas for other things you want to do. It's the exact same thing. Life is like that. It's not something written on paper. And then you follow it verbatim. It's if you put a graph, it's like the zigzag graph. It's not like a straight-up form of line. You're career growth. And no one in the history of the corporate world or testing world, or the developer world. I believe has a straight upward growth will end like this. It's like zig zag, zig zag, zig zag. But then you learn from your experiences. So that's what we need to keep in mind I think one of the problems is that we live in this society where perfectionism is actually overhyped and the people think, okay, I'm not going to do this until it's perfect. But the truth to be told, you're never going to be perfect. There's this fine line between perfectionism and obsession. You really need to figure out what that line is and try something. And also, remember, no one actually cares what you do because everyone thinks you're Jeff Bezos. And then each step you take, the whole entire world is going to watch you. But once you actually train your mind to think that, you know what? This is what I can put out to the world and people take it as it is, and then you live with the consequences. When you think like that and when you do things for your own belief system, for your own value system, that's when you'll see the real impact. Don't do things just because other people are saying and no one is actually watching every step you take because every person has problems in their own lives and they're focusing on themselves. You're not the diva here. That's what I tell to people because this especially, if you put in more tester perspective, one of the things they often get is, hey, I'm really scared to make a LinkedIn post to us, and then connect on LinkedIn and grow my network. Then my next question is, why are you scared of just making any post, anything you want to share? What would people think? That's an immediate response. Who cares what people think? Okay, first thing is, you're not Jeff Bezos. Second thing is, who cares what people think? In the sense you put out what you think and that people, no matter what you do, there, are going to be people who are going to take something positively and something negative. We can never please everyone. You just do your part and then let the results follow and then you are not in control of that. You're only in control of putting out your work to the outside world. That's what I tell people. Don't care about what other people think. You believe in yourself and take small, small steps towards positive change.

[00:14:37] Joe Colantonio Great advice. In your presentation. It was called How to Approach a Tech Career with an Entrepreneur Mindset. I always ask this for speakers. After your session, I noticed people came up to you and talked to you. Were there some key takeaways that people really gravitated towards saying, Wow, that was a key point! I really latched on to that or that really helped me.

[00:14:55] Raj Subrameyer Yeah. Thanks for bringing that up, because I think this is a really useful thing for people to hear. So just to give some set some context on my keynote was about how the different strategies I used to grow in my testing career were literally the same strategies I used to become a successful entrepreneur. Literally, anyone can follow the strategies to level up their career, whether they have a 9 to 5 job, whether they're a consultant, or whether they are a business owner, it doesn't matter. Their commonalities in terms of the strategies they can use to grow, and that's what the talk was about. And I think it hit people hard in terms of because I get real, I give them actionable tips and strategies. I talked about several strategies, but some of the key things that resonated with people was first thing is building credibility. Say, for example, I have this product or say, for example, I have this awesome gadget, this can help paint walls or something. You have this gun kind of thing and then you can paint walls. And it's magical, amazing. And then they say, Hey, get these, buy this product, please, buy this product. I'm not going to buy your product because you haven't actually told me why I should buy it. Second thing is you haven't established that credibility for me to trust you. And what value have you brought for me to actually take you seriously? Here, you get three things. First thing is building credibility. And then once you build credibility, then you build trust. Then once you build actually first credibility, then you build value and then you build trust. These three are the key, irrespective of what you do. And since here our audience are mainly like testers and people in the tech space. Start to put in more context, say you're working at a company. The first thing you need to do is think about how do I establish credibility. How do I make people take me seriously? And there so many ways to do this. For example, when I was working at a company, this was about 15, 16 years ago, there was like 200 rows, there was an excel sheet with 200 rows. And then they were doing a lot of stuff manually, which was consuming like 3 to 4 hours of time. And then I noticed this, and then I just built a macro in VB script. I don't know whether people even remember what VB script is, but the point is, you write that within Excel, macros and then I automated the whole process, and then the 4-hour process took like say 15 minutes. Now, once I did that, that increased my credibility because I saved so much time for people. And now since I built credibility, I got more responsibilities. And then I started offering value by doing lunch and learn sessions, by helping other non-technical folks write automation, and then helping things that are out of my job description as well. Now I built credibility. I've given value and now people trust me. So I get more bigger responsibilities and that's why I've been star performer right in six out of eight companies. And trust me, I'm a really average dude. If I can do it, so can you. To summarize, those were kind of the main three key takeaways. Credibility, then offering value and building trust. If you have those three key things, your career will definitely skyrocket. Trust me on that. And of course, I also discussed other strategies like how to build your personal brand, how we want to become the expert, and so on and so forth. But the crux of the talk was these things which I just mentioned.

[00:18:37] Joe Colantonio All right, so let's apply this to the real world, Raj. We had a bear or so at the. I forgot the name of the place, But you were talking about how you had a new gig where you were starting a QA group or a testing group from the ground up. Now, do you actually encourage them to build credibility, build value, and build trust? Do you have like a framework you actually walk your team through? Or is it more like, how does that work, I guess?

[00:19:01] Raj Subrameyer So yeah, it's a really good question. I think there are multiple things to pick apart here. Number one is how do you build like a QA team from the ground up? What are some strategies? Second thing is once you build a team, how do you make sure each of the team members can build the three pillars, credibility, value, proposition, and trust? So let's divide us into two parts. So let's go to the first part is how do you build a team from the ground up? First thing is, yes, it is hard, but here are some actionable strategies for anyone who say you join a new project and you're tasked with this like building a QA Team or a QA process or if you join a startup company that doesn't have any QA team. Here are some things you want to think about. First thing is what is the cost time which is allocated for you to do your job? What I mean by that is say they have four months time to build a QA team, you have six months time to build a QA team, and how much money you actually have to build a QA team. If they give you $10, it's probably not even enough for a Starbucks coffee. So then there's no point talking about building a QA Team. if you're getting $750,000 as a budget. Okay, now we are talking. I know it's a very oversimplified and exaggerated example, but I'm just trying to hit the point here. The first thing is, to think about what's the cost. What's the money you have and what timeline do you have? Okay, number one. Number two is what are the needs of the company currently? For example, the company I was working at, they really wanted to build automation and then they wanted more resources to do manual testing as well. They were looking at both manual and automated testing. I had to hit both point manual and automation. That's the second thing, which is what are the needs? You have to figure that out. Then, you figure out what type of persona you need based on that budget, like how many resources you can actually hire, say, for example, for $500,000, you get, say, five resources you can hire. Even that is actually I'm over valuing It probably is going to be four. But the point is, say you get five resources, okay, now we have the budget for five resources, how many of them who want to do automation? How many of them are going to do manual testing? What is your vision for the QA team? That's the next thing you want to think about. And then, you would start interviewing and hiring these folks. Then you want to definitely talk to them about how their work actually aligns with company goals. For example, if you're able to reduce production defects from, say, 20 bugs every release to 2 bugs every release, then how does it hit the revenue goal of the company? That's an example. So once you actually clearly articulate the why behind why they're doing what they're doing in terms from a testing standpoint, then people get more interested in their work. And then you start coming up with strategies. Okay, in terms of this amount of time, what tools they have to do use and for manual testing or tools that you use for automated testing, so on and so forth? But that's kind of the usual thing that I've done in so many companies, and it definitely works. Something to think about. So that is number one. Building a QA team from the ground up. And what are some things you want to think about? The second part is, okay, how do you establish credibility? How does a team establish credibility? That's where I think as a leader, as a manager of the team, the person who's leading the team is their job to really help in this effort, because this a thing, in mid-tier companies or even in startup companies. The VP of engineering or the director of QA and say, you're the QA manager and director of QA. They don't have time to figure out what each and every individual in the team is actually doing. You as a manager, it's your responsibility to highlight those things in your weekly status report or Weekly Standard meetings to the leadership. You would say, for example, hey, Rob, there was a production issue and Rob actually worked extra hours and really helped to make sure the product was stable and were able to release it on time for our biggest customer. Just that one sentence now has established Rob's credibility with people. And then people start noticing, okay, Rob is a credible resource we can always trust, because what is coming out here is as a manager, you really have to care for your team and you also have to look into their career and personal development as well. And one way to do that is to ensure that you are the amplifier or the speaker who amplifies each one's work, and that's how they start establishing credibility and trust. And also they often keep offering value. That is one aspect. Another aspect is yes. Each team member individually, needs to figure out, okay, what are the problems currently people are facing from a testing standpoint, development standpoint? What is the smallest thing I can do to make at least a one-person difference? Start to think. If you are an individual contributor and not a manager, that's how you want to start thinking in the sense what is the smallest thing I could do to move the needle forward. And that by itself is enough. You don't have to launch a rocket, you just have to do something simple that people actually recognize and remember. That's what it's all about.

[00:24:46] Joe Colantonio Love it. So you also talked about how to build your personal brand. So you mentioned you had to hire people. What are some steps someone could have done with their personal brand so that when you were hiring, they would have jumped up onto your radar? How would you? Could we tie that in somehow? Like, oh, if someone did this as I told them how to build your personal brand when I was hiring, you would have been found by me or something like that.

[00:25:10] Raj Subrameyer I think in our previous episode we actually delve a lot into this, and because I'm a person who keeps echoing this, your personal brand is the thing that is going to set you apart from the competition, especially in this day and age at this time, where getting jobs are hard and there have been a lot of layoffs. What is going to make you stand out from thousands of other people who are applying for the same job? That's where the personal brand comes into the picture. Now, putting it into context, for example, when I was hiring many people sent me resumes. Immediately I go to their LinkedIn profile and I see how active they are and whether they're doing any contribution to the testing community, whether they're speaking at conferences or even commenting on people's posts. Do they have any LinkedIn articles, Do they have a GitHub project? Have they talked about something they're doing? These are things that impressed me. It's not only me. A lot of other folks actually do this. They actually looked at LinkedIn profile. Some people even look at the Facebook profile to make sure you're not a weirdo or something. But I actually do not use Facebook that much. But yeah, LinkedIn is where I live. So it helps me paint a picture of the candidate like who is this person? What drives them kind of like. And say there are two candidates who apply for, say, a senior to QA engineer job, which I was actually hiring for one person. Both people have, say, for example, a master's in computer science. Say person A and person B, Person A has shown interest in acquiring new skills or attending conferences or sharing what they learn in the community, they're going to stand out from person B who literally has the same skillset but has then got involved with the community. Community is key and that's how you build your network as well. There you go, in the sense in general, why you want to build a personal brand and also say, for example, when I was looking to hire people, I was actually looking at their LinkedIn profile as well. Here are three quick things In case you didn't listen to our first episode I did with Joe where I talked about Personal brand. Here are three great things you could do. First thing is to make sure you start posting on LinkedIn. And again, when I say start posting on LinkedIn, people think you have a post seven times a week, no. It's all about consistency and not intensity. What I mean by that is you have to post the same time that particular day every week. So start with say, 1 post per week or 2 posts per week, say Monday and Friday. And it could be an even a 3-line post and it could be about, okay, shift left testing or test automation or whatever you want to actually share with the outside world. Okay. Start with that and be consistent for 1 to 2 months and then people start noticing you. Second every week have a goal of making 5 LinkedIn connections, authentic LinkedIn connections. So what I mean by that is connect with someone who inspires you, whose content you really like. Make that authentic connection to five connections per week. And third thing you definitely want to do is apart from just posting, try to comment on other people's posts as well, because say for example, I have close to 7,000 followers on LinkedIn. When you comment on a post I made, then I actually notice that you made a comment. My followers now start looking at you, and then you funnel my followers into what you do. It's a whole link. I can talk about LinkedIn algorithms and stuff. That's a whole different conversation. But the three quick things that you could do is what I just mentioned, which is start posting on LinkedIn consistently and then find LinkedIn connections per week, and start commenting on people's LinkedIn posts. And that's what you have to do to start building a personal brand. In fact, the last 5 jobs I've got were actually from LinkedIn. So make jobs actually come to you instead of you actually looking for a job. So you have to change the narrative.

[00:29:20] Joe Colantonio I 100% agree with that. Those approaches for sure. So here's a question out of left field, just popped in my head, AI, I don't think we ever talked about AI. So with all the things you've talked about with personal branding, and entrepreneurial mindset, in the age of AI, is it less important or more important now to have a personal brand or I think being entrepreneur mindset? I don't know if that makes sense, but does AI replace any of that or is it now because AI, we need to stand out even more? What does it not matter at all?

[00:29:50] Raj Subrameyer First of all, AI definitely matters. And I think AI, it's not a replacement, but it's something complementary to what testers do, just like automation. So you do automation to automate repetitive tasks, which consumes a lot of time, then say, you have a CI/CD pipeline, you have some automated test running before code gets checked in to make sure they're stable, but it really helps save time and get quicker feedback. AI is the same way. I think it's something that you could use complement to what you're actually doing. Talking about AI, remember I was talking about LinkedIn posts, literally, you can use ChatGPT and say, Hey, here are my thoughts which I want to share. Can you make it into a LinkedIn post and make it inspirational? Now you're training the generative A.I. world we're living in right now. ChatGPT, for example, will generate a LinkedIn post. There's no excuse for not actually posting on LinkedIn right now because when I was trying to build my personal brand, everything was manually done. But right now you have ChatGPT which literally can generate messages based on what are you thinking. There is a simple quick example of how AI actually aids testers and even in automation as well, there are a lot of tools, AI-based automation tools. What they're basically doing is say, for example, you have a web page and you have a username and password, same for you're using the Selenium framework. And of course, Selenium has more advancements right now, but usually, they follow a single location strategy, which is they use a single attribute to locate an element. For example, for the username field, they may use the ID property and then locate the username. But if someone comes and changes, the ID property from name to say, Raj, then it's going to fail. That's called static location strategy where you're using one attribute to locate a particular element. But now with the AI, and all these tools which are coming up or have come up already, they extract every single attribute of the username field. So even if the ID attribute changes, it immediately go to the name attribute. If the name attribute changes, it will immediately go to the class attribute, and the tag attribute, and then still it will run throughout the attribute that's collected, extracted and then still hit the username field. And it saves you a lot of time into from a maintenance standpoint. So that is an example from a testing standpoint how AI actually helps. AI is definitely something that is going to be really helpful and we as testers need to figure out different ways we could use it. In fact, it's funny, you just asked about AI because yesterday I was thinking about using generative AI for generating test cases and what are some scenarios where I would actually use them. For example, when I was working at Expedia, the travel booking company, I was heading the mobile iOS testing team there. We have to test in four different browser versions, five different operating system versions, and then ten different types of devices, and three types of rendering engines. The combinations like literally thousands of combinations, which is impossible within a day. Then we used the concept of combinatorial testing where we had tools like the Microsoft PICT Tool and the all pairs tool, which helps to reduce the number of datasets to hit the maximum possible combination. That was then. Now, maybe generative AI could do that saying, Hey, I have these browser combinations, these operating system versions, give me the optimal amount of data sets which I have to hit to get good coverage. I'm 99% sure I haven't tested it yet. I literally thinking about it yesterday. I'm pretty sure ChatGPT would give you some information. That's what we need to start thinking. How can we use ChatGPT to make our lives better? And of course, always wear your skeptic hat, you don't want to believe it verbatim. But the point is, it really, really helps to move the needle and get you closer to where you want to be.

[00:34:11] Joe Colantonio I agree with you 100%. Okay, Raj, before we go, is there one piece of actual advice you can give to someone to help them with their entrepreneurial testing efforts? And what's the best way to find or contact you?

[00:34:23] Raj Subrameyer Sure. There's the saying, which I often use is happiness comes through good judgment. Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment. Happiness comes through good judgment. Good judgment comes through experience and experience comes through bad judgment. What I'm coming to say here is don't be afraid to make mistakes. When you try new things, you are going to fail probably more than half the time, and that's life. But you want to learn from it and it takes you one step closer to other opportunities which are going to give you more passion, more value, and more happiness in your work. That's how I try to run my life. And that is something you want to think about as well. Don't be afraid to make mistakes. That's my one piece of advice for people as a takeaway and where you can find me. So there are two ways to find me. One is that you can go to my website, rajsubra.com, all my life's work is on the website. I help people mid to senior-level folks advance their careers and become highly successful leaders so you can find all the videos and how I help people and all the details are there on the website. And also I live on LinkedIn, literally. So if you hear this episode, you want to connect with me and you want to go talk to me further but any of the things, Joe and I talk about, please hit me up. I'd love to connect with people and build my network as well, so definitely you can reach out to me there. And finally, I know, Joe is really nice enough to show my book, so yeah, my book is called Skyrocketyourcareer. So if you go to Skyrocketyourcareerbook.com, you can download the first chapter for free and then you can figure out whether it's something which is worth your time reading as well. Plus, you have a lot of free templates as well. So yeah.

[00:36:20] Thanks again for your automation awesomeness. The links of everything we value we covered in this episode. Head in over to testguild.com/a470. And if the show has helped you in any way, why not rate it and review it in iTunes? Reviews really help in the rankings of the show and I read each and every one of them. So that's it for this episode of the Test Guild Automation Podcast. I'm Joe, my mission is to help you succeed with creating end-to-end, full-stack automation awesomeness. As always, test everything and keep the good. Cheers.

[00:36:56] Hey, thanks again for listening. If you're not already part of our awesome community of 27,000 of the smartest testers, DevOps, and automation professionals in the world, we'd love to have you join the FAM at Testguild.com and if you're in the DevOps automation software testing space or you're a test tool provider and want to offer real-world value that can improve the skills or solve a problem for the Guild community. I love to hear from you head on over to testguild.info And let's make it happen.

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