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Continuous Learning at ThoughtWorks

For the last 2 months I was part of an intense training programme which is targeted at inducting young college graduates into our company ThoughtWorks. I had a lot of memorable experiences and learning over the past 7 weeks and I just wanted to share a few thoughts on this.

While I have spent about 11 years in the Software Testing world, I found it extremely refreshing to be part of this training programme. I wanted to be part of this programme mostly because of the curiosity created inside me by some of my friends who were part of this programme and I should admit that these past 7 weeks have been extremely refreshing both in my personal and professional life at ThoughtWorks.

To begin with, I came to the wonderful city of Pune where the programme is conducted along with my wonderful wife. We had an induction programme for the trainers rightly termed as “Train the Trainer Programme”. During this period, we prepared ourselves with some of the nitty-gritties of the training programme and the dos and donts. This was a useful programme for all of us which helped us think at different levels and share different perspectives. This also helped us hone some of our presentation, communication and facilitation skills. The other good thing to note is that we had trainers coming in from different parts of the world which also helped share and experience different cultures.

After the first two weeks of some easy exercises, the real test began when we had close to 50 young college grads (again from different parts of the world) come in as one huge team. It was very challenging and interesting to facilitate the learning of these young kids. The kind of perspectives these kids bring in is vastly different from what we usually think. They really forced us out of our comfort zones. I even had quite a few interesting debates and discussions with a few kids who had a totally different perspective on Software Programming, Indian education, Women safety and several other technical and social topics.

During the next 5 weeks after the trainer induction, we had a series of classroom sessions and an almost real project simulation that gave the grads a taste of how a real project is done at ThoughtWorks. It also gave them a playground to learn and practice several Agile practices and techniques. Overall it was a wonderful and eventful experience in the past 7 weeks and I am excited to experience this all over again with a new set of trainers and grads.

I am sure I will go back to my normal project delivery with a fresh view of things and a very different mindset.