The Friends & Allies - Human Space

Agile Testing Days USA actively fosters a diversity of voices within our community. We believe that we are all necessary, and we can all contribute, to make our communities and workplaces happy, vibrant and reflective of all the people who are part of them.

This evening has a long history with our mother event - the Agile Testing Days in Potsdam/Germany. It started out as ”Women and Allies” in 2016 and has grown to be much more than that. The range of discussed topics at this session has evolved and is much wider by now resulting in a change of session name into what it is now.
As Lisa Crispin says: “a safe space to talk about uncomfortable subjects".

With this session we would like to give more room to engange into / proceed conversations related to the diversity panel keynote, which takes place beforehand. There are many aspects to diversity and we would like to provide a space where we can address as many of them as desired - share your own story, listen to others', reflect.

But of course this session is not limited to topics around diversity, whatever it is you would like to speak about (mental health, harrassment, psychological safety, anything) - this is your safe place to do so. 
Judgements, harrassment or making experiences void do not have a place here.

The evening has evolved over the years from being structured and facilitated conversations, into being about creating a space where conversations happen. The hosts will be Raj and Gitte, who will start out by creating that space and during the evening take care of people coming and going. Usually discussions take place in small groups, and then we gather once in a while to share if you want.

This is your event. What we’ll discuss is entirely up to you - the evening is designed with a simple format so you can raise what’s important to you, and hear and learn from each other. Bring your puzzles and wishes, your experiments and hopes, or simply come to meet like minds and soak up the atmosphere.

In previous years we have had topics like diversion and inclusion, mental health, cancer, #Metoo, How to get more women interested in tech, How to be a better ally (to any kind of minority), and doing all we can to ensure that we have a safe environment to work, for all of us, and all of our colleagues. We have had people drawing and just being in the space with the rest of us.

You’ll walk away with new insights, confidence, connections, and, hopefully, an action item that is going to make a difference to you or your colleagues. You’ll leave knowing you have contributed to making our special software testing community a place you feel part of, and one that you can shape going forward.