Today we begin year 17 of the Software Process and Measurement Cast with a presentation that Jeremy Berriault did at IdeaFest 2020. The presentation covered using supply chain concepts in an agile environment. When I originally recorded the session, I felt the idea was interesting but not very useful. But I am a bit of a packrat; I don’t throw anything away. Last week I listened to the presentation again. This time I could see that the idea of using supply chain concepts is a great approach to implementing value chains and mirrors why flow metrics are such a valuable concept. Jeremy was just a bit ahead of the rest of the world.

Note, the recording is not perfect. There is some external noise from unmuted microphones in the feed. I think the bit of interference does not diminish the message. The content is great; stay with it and you will have a lot to think about. 


Badass Agile Coaching: The Journey from Beginner to Mastery and Beyond Chapter 12 connects the brain and the mouth. Language is both essential and a deterrent for creating understanding. This is a provocative statement, but the truth of the statement is not open for debate. As a coach, opening the spigot between your brain and your mouth will rarely motivate anyone to change their behavior. As I have noted in the past, earlier in my career I took sales training. Two related concepts that stuck with me were the need to avoid mutual mystification and never to baffle the listener with bull-poop. The core of both of these concepts is language.


Today we revisit the topic of empathy as we mark the last show in year 16. As coaches and leaders, we are taught that being empathetic is critical. However, the blanket statement that we need to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes is not all rainbows and kittens.

We will also have a visit from Jon M Quigley who brings his Alpha and Omega of Product Development column to the podcast. Jon and I continue our conversation on flow and its importance for teams and leaders.


Even if you focus your agile coaching practice on teams you will need to coach up the managerial and executive hierarchy of the team. Chapter 11 of Badass Agile Coaching: The Journey from Beginner to Mastery and Beyond titled The Badass Agile Coach’s Guide to Coaching UP, provides guidance for coaches of all levels of experience.


Luis Gonçalves returns to the Software Process and Measurement Cast to discuss his new book, Product First.  We also talked about organizational mastery and change. Become a beta reader of Product First at 

Luis last joined us on SPaMCAST 718, and we discussed OKRs. 


Chapter 10 of Badass Agile Coaching: The Journey from Beginner to Mastery and Beyond enumerates the four meta-skills in the Coaching Growth Wheel. They are: 

  • Leadership, 
  • Change Artistry, 
  • Inspiration, and 
  • Role Modeling.

These four skills underpin the model and I strongly recommend a close reading of the chapter. We will focus on two of the skills in our discussion.

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A funny thing happened on the way to this week’s Software Process and Measurement Cast, I was asked about managing risk in Agile. In preparation for answering the question, I reviewed and updated some of my work on the topic. So instead of flow metrics, we have an essay on risk. That is just the chance you take when you ask me a question.  Note — I have a great question on risk to ask Susan Parente, @techriskmanager, the next time we record. 

We also have a visit from Tony Timbol. Tony discusses agile requirements in an installment of his To Tell A Story column. Check out Tony at


Chapters 8 and 9 of Badass Agile Coaching: The Journey from Beginner to Mastery and Beyond are written by Mark Summers of Beliminal.  The chapters are a story of a coach engaging in an organizational shift to Agile and the workshops the coach used to get things moving in the right direction. The story fits into a business novel genre. I noticed a pattern in my reading as I worked through these chapters. During my first comprehensive read of a book of this type, I have a tendency to harvest practices and techniques, but the philosophy the author(s) are delivering flows around me. I suspect that what I find valuable in the parable is less the story and the macro rationale for behaviors but rather the tools the author is using to show how the characters are being manipulated. The activities are the punchline for me in my current reading context.  The big takeaways include the flow of planning of interactions, using a combination of stances, the post-interaction review-reflections, and the interaction with a mentor. Each of these activities or groups of activities requires upfront planning and conscious execution. Extraordinary badass agile coaching is not a profession where winging it works forever. When I was discussing using this book in the re-read series with colleagues, some said to me that they really did not want to be badass because it took too much effort. Maybe they were being facetious or sarcastic, but in reality, being good, at anything, is not a spectator sport. The comment was one of those things you just can’t unhear. The moral is to put in the effort and think before speaking.


2022 marked the sixteenth year of the Software Process and Measurement Cast Podcast. Just like McDonald’s we have served millions and millions. The top ten podcasts this year showcased a wide range of topics from an essay on the team leader’s role in agile to panel discussions about hybrid work environments. While there are certainly 10 podcasts that were downloaded more than others, I recommend subscribing ( wherever you get your podcasts from so that you don’t miss any of the 52 podcasts in 2023 and so you have access to the entire back-catalog. If you’re not the subscribing type, then sample the ten the listeners downloaded the most:


Today we share our year-end panel discussion with the SPaMcast contributors and occasionally our dogs (once one gets going everyone needs to get in on the action). The topic this year is engagement. Is being on two calls at once, engagement? Does just being present tick the engagement box?  Patterns and antipatterns abound, but Is engagement really that important?

The panelists for this installment are:

Jeremy Berriault

Jeremy Willets

Susan Parente