Having a testing specialist on the team is a valuable asset, but the role of a specialist isn’t to restrict that responsibility to a single person.
Learn, learn, learn
A software tester should be able to communicate and to learn. What better way to grasp new skills but to talk about them with specialists?
You should be an expert at software testing, but to become better, you should know a bit of everything going on in the world of software development. The idea is to be as t-shaped as possible.
Use your educational budget to learn whatever will make you a better tester. From coding tutorials to psychology books, as long as you're growing as a person and advancing your technical understanding, you're growing as a tester.
Do not burn out
Always keep in mind that quality is not only your responsibility, it is the responsibility of the entire team. You could be doing a great job, but the project (or projects) could still be stagnating.
In those cases, you could become frustrated and some of these problems might start bothering you:
- Too much work on your plate.
- Cannot find any bugs or contribute to the project.
- Bugs are crawling from all over the place and you cannot find them in time.
- There are many technical terms you do not understand.
- The project has become boring.
- You keep doing the same thing over and over again with little results.
- The client is not happy with the finished product.
- You are not happy with the people you are working with.
Your motivation may decrease at times. This is normal, but a prolonged case of demotivation will definitely impact your work and satisfaction.
Please keep in mind that all of the aforementioned problems (and others) can be addressed by your team lead or the HR department. The imporant thing is to speak up before you burn out.