Happy Birthday to the Software Process and Measurement Cast. SPaMCAST 583 marks the beginning of the Podcast’s 14th year!  The first podcast of year 14 features a three-way discussion between Susan Parente, Anthony Mersino, and myself. We discussed the pros and cons of hybridizing agile frameworks. Hybridizing agile approaches is a lightning rod concept in many circles. Susan, Anthony and I have different experiences and opinions on the topic. The conversation was spirited. (more…)

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Read the book!

We are quickly closing in on the completion of the re-read of Thinking Fast and Slow. Today we are tackling the last two chapters before Kanhneman’s conclusions. Assuming “God willing and the creek don’t rise” (an Americanism), we will begin Crucial Conversations in three weeks. I have purchased my copy and have started reading the book.  (more…)


Rock piled by the shoreMost internal IT organizations do not have a lot of experience as professional customer research personnel, but they have to get a handle on how their work is perceived. Before tackling the collection and analysis of how customers and clients perceive their work there are four considerations, we take a deeper dive into three today. (more…)

One Way Stop Sign

Measuring or assessing customer satisfaction is a fact of life for products and services for organizations that deliver to their customers. I receive several every day. Each text, email and phone call asking my opinion tells me that my opinion matters. The process of determining whether customers are happy is a form of attention. Internal customers are not always paid the same compliment, this is a rectifiable mistake. There are multiple ways to collect customer satisfaction data (a sample of techniques are in Customer Satisfaction Metrics and Quality) the next four segments of the blog are not going to focus on data collection techniques, but rather on internal customer satisfaction measurement rationale and infrastructure. Spending time upfront to understand whether what you are doing solves a problem or is a sustainable process is important. None of this is easy and doubly so because most collecting and analyzing the data aren’t marketing or market research personnel. There are four areas that need to consider before you send your first survey or schedule your first stakeholder interview. (more…)

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SPaMCAST 582 features our interview with Paul Gibbons.  We discussed his new book IMPACT: 21st Century Change Management, Behavioral Science, Digital Transformation, and the Future of Work (Leading Change in the Digital Age). The interview started by exploring the high-level factors that influence change and then spun down into areas such as the future of work, biases, and de-biasing. This is the second book in the series he began with  The Science of Successful Organization Change which we discussed on SPaMCAST 480. The ideas that Paul shares are thought-provoking and will improve how you think about change.  

Pau’s bio: (more…)

Book Cover

Read the book!

Two things before we dive in this week.  

The next book in our Re-read Saturday Feature is Crucial Conversations Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, Switzler.  I have never read this book, I just ordered the book using the link https://amzn.to/34RuZ6V (using the link helps support the blog and podcast). If you do not have a copy or have tossed it at someone during a crucial conversation, it is time to buy a copy. Please use the link above!  

Secondly,  Business Agility Conference (March 11 -12, 2020 in New York City) is sponsoring the Software Process and Measurement Podcast. If you are a friend on the podcast and blog and are shopping for a great business agility conference, this one I recommend. Check out the conference at http://bit.ly/2SmOJMS, and use the special code “spamcast” to get a 20% discount!  

Chapter 36 of Thinking, Fast and Slow, is titled Life As A Story. This chapter focuses on two closely related biases that impact the stories we tell about our lives. Early in my career, the team I was working on had to do an install on a Friday evening just before midnight (retail organization and by midnight the stores were closed and settled).  We had been working on a piece of functionality for several months and tonight it was rolling out! We were psyched, it had been a great effort and we had done some very cool work. One weird thing had happened right after lunch, a team member had quit. He had just walked out. My memory of the project to that was stelling.  Telling the story after that night, it was different. We discovered the person who had walked out that day had written and committed a stub built to fool the tests about thirty minutes before the system was supposed to go live. A lot of coffee and 4 hours later we had coded the functionality and tested it. We were late and exhausted. This is just the kind of story that is illustrative of the points in this chapter. Afterward, none of the stories recognized the time before that fateful evening. Everyone of repackaged the events to tell the of our crazy evening. Kahneman calls the part of the person doing the remembering, the “remembering self.” People compose stories and keep them for future reference. The idea that stories are important is supported by how System 1 Thinking works. It connects ideas and memories to generate narratives.   (more…)

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Not everything is linear

Value Stream Mapping originated in manufacturing. The diagrams we all know love can be traced back to Charles Knoeppel’s book Installing Efficiency Methods (1918). The problem of lifting this technique directly from manufacturing is that in knowledge work there are more shared people and resources, variability in processing time and path, and changing requirements. Mapping this morass gets messy and often frustrating. Strategies for addressing two common issues, shared people and resources and variability in processing time, are described below: (more…)