Ben Maynard: The relationships of a Scrum Product Owner

Being a PO is not only about the backlog items, it is mostly about collecting feedback and involving the right people in the product development. We talk about the 5 relationships of a Product Owner

The Great Product Owner: The 5 relationships of a Product Owner

Ben starts by sharing “the 5 relationships of a Product Owner”, and how great PO’s focus on building those relationships, not only on the backlog items they need to create. In this segment, we talk about a PO that spent their time learning the practices that were required to be able to work with those “5 relationships”, and help the team develop a simple initial impact map that would help them throughout the project.

In this segment, we refer to the LeSS framework for scaling Agile and Scrum.

The Bad Product Owner: 4 critical PO anti-patterns

Ben discusses a particular anti-pattern for the Product Owner: the PO that created the backlog alone in their room, without talking to the team. We discuss how this anti-pattern leads to the team feeling they are “out of the loop”, and be disconnected from the real customer needs. In this episode, we also refer to the following anti-patterns:

  • The PO as a requirements manager; 
  • The PO going in between teams, not allowing them to talk to each other;
  • The PO as the Analyst, instead of Product Owner.

 

Are you having trouble helping the team working well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at: bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Ben Maynard

Ben is an experienced coach, trainer, and mentor assisting senior leaders in medium to large organizations with organizational design and the cultural repercussions. 

You can link with Ben Maynard on LinkedIn and connect with Ben Maynard on Twitter.

Ben Maynard: Key questions to consider as a Scrum Master

Ben reminds us that action, rather than knowledge (not acted on) is the key to being a successful Scrum Master. He then goes through a list of aspects he considers important for Scrum Masters to keep track of. 

In this episode, we refer to the Q12 survey, and a few questions Ben likes to ask from the team members.

Featured Retrospective for the Week: The Lego Retrospective

Ben suggests we use the Lego Retrospective, to help the team visualize their last Sprint. He shares how the construction process using Lego allows the team to “point to something” when discussing the learnings from the last Sprint, and helps us find new learnings that we would otherwise ignore with other Retrospective formats. 

 

Do you wish you had decades of experience? Learn from the Best Scrum Masters In The World, Today! The Tips from the Trenches – Scrum Master edition audiobook includes hours of audio interviews with SM’s that have decades of experiences: from Mike Cohn to Linda Rising, Christopher Avery, and many more. Super-experienced Scrum Masters share their hard-earned lessons with you. Learn those today, make your teams awesome! 

About Ben Maynard

Ben is an experienced coach, trainer, and mentor assisting senior leaders in medium to large organizations with organizational design and the cultural repercussions. 

You can link with Ben Maynard on LinkedIn and connect with Ben Maynard on Twitter.

Ben Maynard: Being a Director and a Scrum Master, lessons learned in change management

We often see Scrum Masters come from the team’s ranks. A tester, a developer and sometimes even project managers take on the Scrum Master role. Ben suggests a different approach and shares his own story. Ben started his Scrum Master role when he was a director of a department, and he explains why senior leaders benefit from, and should also practice the role of the Scrum Master.

In this episode, we talk about adopting Scrum in larger organizations, and the key role that leadership roles play in that process.

About Ben Maynard

Ben is an experienced coach, trainer, and mentor assisting senior leaders in medium to large organizations with organizational design and the cultural repercussions. 

You can link with Ben Maynard on LinkedIn and connect with Ben Maynard on Twitter.

Ben Maynard: When the “best” team is a world of trouble for the Scrum Master

It seems like a “no brainer” to choose the best people available and form a team with them. However, as Ben reminds us, that’s not always the case. Sometimes the “best” people available don’t have compatible personalities, and the Scrum Master must be able to understand and tackle that together with leadership. In this episode, Ben shares the story of a team of “stars” that just couldn’t work together and describes the things he tried (and which worked… or not) to help that team grow.

In this episode, we refer to LeSS and to an episode with Bas Vodde, one of the creators of the LeSS framework.

In this segment, we refer to Deming and the concept of Gemba walks

Featured Book of the Week: Practices For Scaling Lean & Agile Development, by Vodde and Larman

Thanks to Bas Vodde’s and Craig Larman’s Practices For Scaling Lean & Agile Development, Ben changed his career. First, he started by applying many of the ideas in the book, and started to like the approach that the authors take in the book: suggesting experiments for readers to try. While reading the book, ben found many ideas that he could try at work, which ultimately led him to become a large scale Scrum trainer. 

About Ben Maynard

Ben is an experienced coach, trainer, and mentor assisting senior leaders in medium to large organizations with organizational design and the cultural repercussions. 

You can link with Ben Maynard on LinkedIn and connect with Ben Maynard on Twitter

Ben Maynard: Struggling as a Scrum Product Owner, lessons learned in collaboration

Ben reminds us that Product Owners can sometimes focus on their work so much that they forget about the importance of interacting directly with the team. In this story, Ben shares his own experience as a struggling PO and what happened when he tried to create the backlog in isolation, without the team being involved. His intentions were good, but the way we create the backlog can make or break the product development process. 

Are you having trouble helping the team working well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at: bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Ben Maynard

Ben is an experienced coach, trainer, and mentor assisting senior leaders in medium to large organizations with organizational design and the cultural repercussions. 

You can link with Ben Maynard on LinkedIn and connect with Ben Maynard on Twitter.