In May 2015, I showed up as a guest on the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast. I've told you all about it here already.

About a year later, I met with Vasco Duarte, the podcast host, again in person at the NCrafts conference and we had some more time to chat. There I suggested flipping the table around and that Vasco let me interview him on his own podcast. A few month later, the podcast came out... and I haven't really written anything about it yet.

Vasco uses a strict format of 5 questions to structure his podcast. And the 5 episodes show up monday to friday. Since we've heard countless answers to those questions already, I decided to add a twist to them before asking them to Vasco. That's how I ended up with the following questions:

  • Fail Monday: We like to learn from our failures. Tell us a story where you (as a SM/Coach) were sure you had a fail-recipe in front of you, but the team/project/system proved you wrong. -> Episode 1
  • Team Tuesday: sometimes teams want to do crazy things. As coach/SM we sometime don't really know how to react. Tell us a story of the craziest things you lived, how you helped the team and how it ended. -> Episode 2
  • Change Wednesday: Sometimes we have to shake the tree a little. Tell us the story of the most crazy things you did to enable a Team/Project/System. -> Episode 3
  • Success Thursday: In order to improve as a scrum master we need to be able to define success and measure/Assess our way into that place. Have you ever had the feeling of being on the worst track but gotten the feedback that you did exactly what was necessary for the situation at hand? Tell us this story and the key lesson you learned from it. -> Episode 4
  • System Friday: what is the most WTF situation that the system pressed on you? How did you manage to go through it? -> Episode 5

I think this series turned out absolutely great. Vasco had a ton of great stories to share and got to sweat a bit, experiencing his questioning first hand. I personally had a blast hosting the podcast and sharpening my interviewing skills with him.

If you haven't tried this before, it's really an interesting task. First you kickoff the question. Then you listen carefully to what the guest is saying, and imagine how you could use the answer to dig deeper in the same direction. But at the same time, you have to prepare a different question, just in case the current one ends up being a dead-end. And at the same time keeping an eye on the clock to make sure you don't explode the timetable (which is quite short on this podcast). I've done it many times for DevJourney but it's still an exercise I fear.

Anyhow, have you listened to those episodes yet? What do you think? Have you listened to other episodes of the SMTP?

And as a side note, Vasco is still searching for people to interview...

PS: @Vasco, thanks again!