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SPaMCAST 501 features our essay on Agile Metrics. Progress is easy to visualize when we use the yardstick of calendar time. My wife and I spent 17 days in Europe. There are 177 shopping days until Christmas (as of July 1, 2018) — I expect presents this year. How long it takes to deliver a piece of work, in days, is something nearly every human can understand. Over the past few months, I have been cataloging questions I have heard. Well over 70% of work-related questions center on how long a piece of work will take and whether the answer to that question has value. Cycle time metrics are ways to generate answers to ‘how long’ questions in a manner that is valuable and predictable.

Our second column features Jeremy Berriault.  In the QA Corner, Jeremy and I discussed the idea of self-reliance rather than using third-party testing organizations.  Or when you have to use third parties for testing, Jeremy provides advice on getting the most out of your third party.

Anchoring the cast is Susan Parente. Susan discusses certification. There are tons of certifications and more appear every day. Susan provides advice on which ones are important and which are not!

Re-Read Saturday News

This week we are full ahead in our re-read of L. David Marquet’s Turn the Ship Around! We dive into chapters 24 and 25, which are titled: A Dangerous Passage and Looking Ahead.  

Pick the next book in the re-read series.  I will cut the poll off on 2 July.

Current Installment:

Week 16:  A Dangerous Passage and Looking Ahead (more…)

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The Software Process and Measurement Cast 476 features our interview with Kyle Siemens.  Kyle is CEO at Brightest. We discussed the case for certifications. The whole concept of certifications is a lightning rod for the excesses of agile and the Agile (big A) industry.  Mr. Siemens makes a strong argument for certification when done properly.

Kyle’s Bio

Kyle Siemens is an energetic, loyal and hard-working Canadian from Winnipeg, Manitoba. After completing my Bachelor’s degree at the University of Manitoba in German literature and mathematics, I moved to Berlin in 2006 with a DAAD scholarship and got my Masters in communication and languages. After working several years at various agencies (running campaigns for national and international brands), I stumbled upon an incredible path by chance, which led me to where I am today – Online Marketing Volunteer of the TMMi Foundation and CEO of a global ISTQB exam provider called Brightest:

Reach out to Kyle on LinkedIn

Re-Read Saturday News

This week we tackled Chapter 10 of Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability: An Introduction by Daniel S. Vacanti. Today we begin Part 3 with Chapter 10 which is titled, Introduction to Cycle Time Scatterplots. Scatterplots take us beyond the analysis of average cycle time (or even approximate average cycle time).  Scatterplots provide a visual representation of the data so we can begin to use the data to predict the future.  Remember to buy your copy today and read along, and we will be back next week!

Previous Installments

Introduction and Game Plan
Week 2: Flow, Flow Metrics, and Predictability
Week 3: The Basics of Flow Metrics
Week 4: An Introduction to Little’s Law
Week 5: Introduction to CFDs
Week 6: Workflow Metrics and CFDs
Week 7: Flow Metrics and CFSs
Week 8: Conservation of Flow, Part I
Week 9: Conservation of Flow, Part II
Week 10: Flow Debt
Week 11: Introduction to Cycle Time Scatterplots

Support the author (and the blog), buy a copy of Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability: An Introduction by Daniel S. Vacanti (more…)

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The Software Process and Measurement Cast 429 is a  special event. Ryan Ripley (who appeared on SPaMCAST 404 and is the host of the Agile for Humans Podcast) and the I recently connected virtually to discuss the role and impact of certifications on the Agile movement.  Certifications are an important gating tool in the job market and may provide evidence that people are keeping up to date with changes in the industry.  Or certifications could represent the calcifying of boundaries that make the adage ‘inspect and adapt’ a thing of the past.  We discuss!  We are going to release the audio on both our podcasts serially, the SPaMCAST today and then Agile for Humans on the 13th!  

Make sure both Agile for Humans and the Software Process and Measurement Cast are part of your weekly rituals!  

Mr. Ryan Ripley has worked on agile teams for the past 10 years in development, scrum master and management roles. He’s worked at various Fortune 1000 companies in the medical device, wholesale, and financial services industries.

Ryan is great at taking tests and holds the PMI-ACP, PSM I, PSM II, PSE, PSPO I, PSD I, CSM, CSPO, and CSP agile certifications. He lives in Indiana with his wife Kristin and three children. Ryan blogs at and hosts the Agile for Humans Podcast. You can also follow Ryan on Twitter: @ryanripley

Re-Read Saturday News

This week we tackle Chapter 2 in Carol Dweck’s Mindset: The New Psychology of Success (buy your copy and read along). In Chapter 2 Dweck provides a deeper dive into fixed and growth mindsets.  The chapter begins with Dweck’s relating how the discovery that there were two meanings to the word ‘ability’ shaped the work.  The first definition for ability is a fixed capability that needs to be proven (continually); the second definition is that an ability is a capability that can be developed through learning. The distinction between two definitions are at the heart of the behavioral differences between the growth and fixed mindsets.  Those that believe that abilities can be developed will seek stretch goals and view failures as learning opportunities, while those with a fixed mindset will have a very different point of view.  

Every week we discuss the chapter then consider the implications of what we have “read” from the point of view of someone pursuing an organizational transformation and also how to use the material when coaching teams.  

Remember to buy a copy of Carol Dweck’s Mindset and read along!

Visit the Software Process and Measurement Cast blog to participate in this and previous re-reads. (more…)