Cristiana Maria Gusanu

Expert IT Architect, Nordea Markets - Copenhagen, Denmark

    Cristiana Maria Gusanu is an Expert IT Architect at Nordea Capital Markets, Denmark. She holds a Master’s Degree in Automation and Robotics and a PhD in Cybernetics. Cristiana has over 15 years of experience in test automation and quality assurance. Along with being actively involved in the design and creation of new testing systems, she is spending a lot of time helping organizations to shift their mentality towards a new, ‘out of the box’ and more quality oriented mind-set. She regularly holds public talks and tutorial classes on topics covering Quality Assurance as well as Innovation and Creative Thinking.

    About her talk

    Inside Innovation – How to Start Innovation in Your Organization

    In a time when testing is a task as complex as development, companies need test engineers with more ‘out of the box’ mind set than usual. Everyone agrees that innovation is the way forward. This presentation is a journey into innovative thinking and a guide on starting innovation. Testing is not done anymore by just using one ‘off the shelf tool’, but by combining, improving and innovating many of them. The test architectures can be sometimes quite unconventional and pretty unique. Having a creative and innovative mind is as important as having the required technical knowledge. And leaders need to know how to explore and understand their teams’ way of thinking too. Throughout the first part of my presentation I will be explaining in very simple terms what the main characteristics of the innovative thinking are and how productive thinking is what we are aiming for. Simple examples are backing up this part. I also use references to the thinking style of Einstein, Edison, daVinci, Bach, Galileo and Picasso. The second part of the presentation is a step by step guide on how to train our minds to become more innovative, more creative. What to do in order to set the prerequisites for innovation and then how to combine thoughts and force associations. I will refer to my experience in doing the same thing in my organization which is also the main reason why I decided to create this presentation and share it with others. Everything is once again backed up with easy to understand and quick exercises which can be used afterwards by anyone. The last part of the presentation covers a topic which stops most of the people from embracing the risk of taking an innovative path: failure. What to do if you failed but mainly, from the experience of running this innovation pilot in my company, how to move forward without big failures. The presentation is instructive and motivational in the same time. It served as a starting point for a pilot project started in my company and the exercises which I am putting forward are part of tutorial classes which I am holding constantly in and outside my company.

    The main takeaways of my presentation are:

    • Modelling the problem approach techniques and open up ways to change the classic problem solving approaches;

    • Understanding the innovative thinking processes;

    • Innovation thinking exercises with practical examples;

    • How to use failure in the innovation process;

    • How all the above apply in the testing landscape.