[Originally posted May 8, 2011]
Last week I was at the STAREast software testing conference in Orlando, Florida, where I was asked to be a panelist at the Bonus Session "Trends, Innovations and Blind Alleys", along with experts Jon Bach, Ross Collard, Rob Sabourin, Justin Hunter, Michael Bolton, and Julian Harty. Someone from the audience asked us about the perception of QA or Testing as not being "cool"; that entry level technologists wanted to get into the "cool jobs", like programming and development, and not Testing or QA, which wasn't.
I didn't have a response at first, but after a few minutes of quiet thought I chimed in to the ongoing discussion by my fellow panelists. I said that I don't think that a job is something that has the capacity to be "cool" or "not cool". People can be cool...or not cool.
It's up to you: If you come to work everyday with pride and self confidence, then you're working in a cool job. On the other hand, if you come in with an inferiority complex, having doubts about the amount of value you're adding to the project, then you yourself are creating the non-cool job that you find yourself in. It has nothing to do with your job itself; it has everything to do with what you bring to your job.