Combining three roles at one company might seem like a bit much to most people, but not for Bozena. There’s nothing she’s afraid of! In this edition of the ‘Getting to know us’ series, we are talking to her about her roles at spriteCloud, why she chose to work in all these different areas, what she likes about it and what’s challenging. Have a good read.
Hi, can you please introduce yourself?
My name is Bozena Kowalska, I’m from Poland and I work for spriteCloud for almost 1,5 years. Who am I? I’m passionate about the things I do – with me it’s all in or nothing at all. I’m also very competitive (I mean it) and I care about people, especially the ones I work with. In my free time to read mystery novels and psychology books.
Regarding your professional background. What was the path you took to get to where you are today?
I started my career working in a warehouse and packing boxes. I started asking myself what would happen if I would try this or that job. This lead me to become team lead, troubleshooter, admin and eventually I worked in every department and knew the system. Thanks to my knowledge I was asked to become a tester for UAT.
From there the QA manager asked me to join QA to help them improve the existing processes and test them. When I knew all systems I decided it was time to change jobs to learn something new. I pivoted to a QA engineer role and four years later it was time for a new challenge. That’s when I started at spriteCloud. That’s where I’m at now, having loads of fun, challenges and satisfaction from what I do!
You wear many hats at spriteCloud. What are your different roles?
I work as a QA engineer, line manager, and traffic-resource manager.
Why is one person doing three jobs? I love to be busy! I love to help and improve. I start losing interest when I get bored, so I make sure not to get bored 🙂
I find my first job as a QA engineer very interesting and special when I can point out improvements. It’s also fun to be able to destroy systems, and I can as that is part of my job description ;-).
Why become a line manager? Because I want to help people, help them grow, and also because they are also my motivation to push further and further.
Traffic-resource manager? As I said I like to learn and be busy. With this job, I can learn a lot from so many different departments. My colleagues are showing me completely different perspectives, I almost never do the same thing. Every day is different and I have a lot of human contacts, which is something I miss as a QA engineer.
What do you like most about having such diverse responsibilities? What do you find challenging?
What do I like? The fact I’m always busy, challenged, and that I can work with many different departments and learn something new from every single person. The most fun I have is when I work with someone for the first time. I need to find out what is what, how I can help, and what I can improve.
hmm challenging … not to get upset with myself when I make a mistake. I can handle a lot but I’m not good dealing with disappointment, be it with myself or others. Sometimes understanding the points of view of others sometimes can be challenging as we are all different, coming from different countries, cultures and having different perspectives on things – but that’s no reason not to try!
Thinking about your future, what are new skills or interests that you would like to explore?
From a QA perspective, the answer would be automation. This has been on my mind for a long time. Thanks to my colleagues I have already started the process. I would like to improve my skills for my own development, but also to be able to advise others better.
From a line manager’s perspective, I would like to see how I can help my colleagues more effectively and how I can motivate people. This would be beneficial to employees and to the company in general – so everyone wins 🙂
Motivating people might not seem like much but it’s an ambitious goal. As well as helping and advising them. How do you plan to work on that?
Usually, I’m going by my feelings and intuition, which works 80% of the time, but I also plan MT courses for management just to learn more and be better.
One of your roles is being a line manager. What do you think are important skills to have to be a good line manager?
Understanding, that’s for sure. You should be able to put yourself in somebody else shoes. When I listen to my teammates I always ask myself this question: would this answer of lack of an answer upset me if I would share something with my line manager? I also think about how I would feel if I repeatedly raised an issue and there was no change. On a more positive note, I ask myself what reaction I would want to see. This might not look like much, but reflecting on them and acting accordingly means a lot.
Diplomacy: how to speak with people, but also how to speak with the management and understand each other needs. How can we find a solution that satisfies all parties?
Caring: seeing my colleagues as people and not only their role or the job they do. This brings me back to point one, understanding them and finding what motivates and drives them.
Being assertive: not only with my teammates but also with the management team.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I enjoy watching animes and crime movies, training my dog, reading about psychology, kickboxing and attending comedy or stand-up events.
Interesting, and what aspects of psychology do you read about?
Generally, it revolves around the human way of thinking and motivation. So understanding why people act in a certain way, the impact certain experiences have on their character, and what motivates them, for example. It’s pretty broad but it’s the same with my hobbies, there are so many interesting things in the world. I can’t just pick one and stop trying new things!