Maaret Pyhäjärvi


Maaret Pyhäjärvi

Maaret Pyhäjärvi is a feedback fairy with a day job at Vaisala, where she works as Principal Test Engineer. She identifies as empirical technologist, tester and programmer, catalyst for improvement, author and speaker, and community facilitator and conference organizer. She was awarded as Most Influential Agile Testing Professional Person 2016, listed on 100 most influential in ICT in Finland by TiVi 2019, and has spoken at events in 25 countries delivering over 400 sessions. With 25 years of exploratory testing under her belt, she crafts her role into being a mix of leading, hands-on testing and programming. She is a serial volunteer and organizing powerhouse contributing to European Testing Conference and TechVoices, as well as Finnish non-profit scene. She blogs at, and is the author of three LeanPub books: Mob Programming Guidebook, Exploratory Testing and Strong-Style Pair Programming. Her web page is

Topic: Building Status – or Why None of My Advice Will Work for You Today

Abstract: Starting with a new tester colleague expressing a feeling of insignificance as they can’t understand everything and our team isn’t hearing them out, a realization unfolded. 

With 25 years in the industry, I have acquired status that enables me to say and do things that create a very different impact than people who try to learn from me. Status isn’t something I was given, but it is something I have worked on.

In this talk, we start with impacts I can make in a short time as a newly recruited principal test engineer, from creating a reputation of excellence for the teams I work with to changing some of the unchangeable in the organization. We then drill down on the skills of becoming a great tester and a trusted advisor. 

None of my advice on what exactly I would do to solve a problem will work for you today, so in this talk, we look at how to build the status, a skills area at a time, growing your impact and scale. 

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