A year ago I visited a meetup in Hamburg. It was about a (world famous) technical agency. They told the audience how they are working in terms of development, product ownership, project management and quality assurance. All topics were quite interesting.

After that one-hour session networking was starting. As a quality manager myself I took the chance to talk to their expert. I asked him some questions and in most cases, he had good approaches to solve those problems. He told me a lot about how he was working, some ideas were out of date, some were very modern. It was a good talk. I thought.

When I came home from that event one thing came to my mind. The whole 30 minutes I was talking to the expert it was only me who was asking questions. It seems he was not interested in other opinions. As I am doing quality management for almost ten years I can tell some crazy, funny, inspirational stories as well. But he did not want to hear them, although I tried to. One could think that it was good for me. I could learn about new things without having to tell a lot.

But three things were wrong that evening:

  • The expert did not ask questions. It is so important to ask. Ask. Ask. Although you are already an expert, there are a lot of people out there that are better than you. And if they are not better perhaps they just think different. Both could be helpful for future tasks. If you are only telling what you are doing you cannot get better.
  • I had no chance to challenge my ideas. As the founder of the lean testing approach and www.leankoala.com it is important to talk to other experts about disruptive ideas. Lucky us, there were a lot of other people interested over the last months.
  • I had no fun listening. If I only want to hear somebody talking about the right way I would open youtube and search for “somebody talking”. It’s all about discussions, other opinions and getting better together.

That is also a rule for blogs. I may be the guy who is typing his ideas, but that does not mean that I am not interested in yours. Leave a comment and start a discussion. Everything that helps to get better is really welcomed.