What do you wish you knew about your job when you first started out?
Director of Engineering in St. Louis:
"Stay ahead of your peers."
Computer science and programming skills are extremely helpful in QA. Knowing more, being more efficient than your peers, and working more makes advancement easy in this field.
Director of Engineering in Sterling Heights:
"The Behavior of An Organization Reflects The Top Level Manager."
If the President of a company behaves honorably, the whole company will behave with honor. If the President behaves questionably, then the company behavior will be questionable toward employees and customers.
This applies at all levels. You have the ability to affect the behavior of the organization at your level and directly below. Others watch you. Behave accordingly.