In this episode, we discuss how the way we organize teams can impact the effectiveness of an organization. Jeff and Simone share the journey of a team, how it changed, and how that team structure change affected not only the team itself but also the organization around them.
Simone shares that, at Meltwater, they try to focus on “empowered product teams”, and how that differs from most team setups.
We refer to the book Inspired by Marty Cagan, and how that book influenced their view on how to organize and structure product development teams.
The first problem they tackled was the Product Owner being an outsider to the team.
Making the Product Owner, a first-order citizen in an Agile team
When the change started, the Product Owners would do their work “outside” the team. They would do discovery and product definition without the team being involved. This led to many misunderstandings and problems during the development process. In this segment, Simone and Jeff share how they changed the set up so that the PO became a team member, and the whole team participated in the discovery process which was still led by the Product Owners.
Platform team, a new approach
Eventually, Simone and Jeff worked with the team (including the PO!) to evolve the structure and how they served other teams in the organization. This new approach took the heading of “platform team”, and we discussed it in some detail in a previous episode with Jeff and Amer.
Focusing on the pain, to kickstart the transformation
The transformation took time and effort over a long period of time. But the starting of the process is critical. Jeff and Simone share how the journey got started, and share the main steps they took to help the team change and evolve. Leadership support is one of those critical steps, which we discussed in a previous episode with Jeff and Scott.
About Jeff Campbell and Simone Sciarrati
Simone Sciarrati is an Engineering Team Lead at Meltwater. He has worked with distributed systems from online gaming to data-intensive applications while participating in the many changes happening in our industry. At Meltwater he has been focusing on building a platform to make life easier for the development teams.
Jeff Campbell is an Agile Coach who considers the discovery of Agile and Lean to be one of the most defining moments of his life and considers helping others to improve their working life not to simply be a job, but a social responsibility.
He is the author of actionable agile tools, which you can get on Amazon and directly from the author at bit.ly/aatbook
As an Agile Coach, he has worked with driving Agile transformations in organizations both small and large.