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Grassroots to Growth - My Personal Insights from the Leeds Testing Atelier

3 mins read time

By Crispin Read

Working with The Coders Guild, I often find myself in rooms filled with the future of tech, surrounded by buzzing potential. But there's something really special about the Leeds Testing Atelier. This grassroots, self-organised conference embodies a spirit that resonates deeply with my values and, I believe, is fundamental to the ethos of our tech community.

TL;DR I really like the Leeds Testing Atelier and the people that run it - if you are here for the links and things I mentioned in my talk scroll to the end of the post 🙂 👇

Back in 2015, shortly after moving to Leeds, I discovered the nascent stages of what would become the Leeds Testing Atelier. It was there, amidst the enthusiastic exchange of ideas, that I found a community driven by a shared passion for tech and testing. This wasn't just another industry meet-up; it was a gathering that celebrated the raw essence of grassroots movements — minimal yet mighty in its impact.

Despite never having been a tester by profession, my background in software development was heavily influenced by human-computer interaction and user experience. This made me a staunch advocate for the power of testing, not just as a phase in development but as a cornerstone of quality and accessibility in tech.

What sets the Leeds Testing Atelier apart is its authenticity. It eschews the usual fanfare - no flashy branding, no swag - focusing instead on what truly matters: knowledge sharing and community building. This approach not only makes the event accessible but also enriches it, allowing the content and the conversations to shine.

Our mission has always been to democratise access to tech education, making it more inclusive and relevant. This aligns perfectly with the spirit of the Atelier. We're not just looking to fill rooms with bodies or tick boxes; we want to ignite a passion for tech and foster a community where everyone can thrive.

So, to all attending this year's Atelier: if you're moved by the commitment to community and knowledge, let's connect. Whether you're considering integrating apprentices into your team, seeking ways to upskill, or just curious about what The Coders Guild can offer, I’m here. Let’s explore how we can bring the essence of the Leeds Testing Atelier into every aspect of our work in tech.

This event is more than a date in our calendars. It's a reflection of our values and a beacon for our aspirations. If this resonates with you, I encourage you to reach out. Let's harness the community spirit and drive forward the future of tech together.

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