Manuele Piastra: Customer-Centric Product Ownership, and how it grows the product IQ of the Scrum team

The Great Product Owner: Coaching the Uncoachable, Dealing with Difficult Product Owners

In this segment, Manuele talks about the anti-pattern of a Product Owner (PO) with a product manager background. PO’s with this background tend to focus on managing the work and the team, assigning tasks themselves, and writing solution-centric stories. They provide little focus on the “why” and the vision, which deviates from the idea of working as a team and breaks team dynamics. Manuele suggests nurturing the relationship if the PO is open to learning and working with you, but redefining the coaching contract with the sponsors if the PO is a senior person who is used to telling others what to do. If you can’t coach the PO, Manuele advises considering getting out of there.

For ideas, tips, and models to use when coaching your Product Owner, check out our Coach Your PO e-course, now on its second version.

The Bad Product Owner: Customer-Centric Product Ownership, and how it grows the product IQ of the team

In this episode, Manuele talks about the impact a great Product Owner (PO) can have on a Scrum team. He explains that great POs start from the “why” and develop a compelling vision for the product. They find out who the customers and personas are and help team members get in touch directly with customers and stakeholders. This helps raise the product IQ of the team, making them more product savvy. Great POs allow team members to talk to customers and stakeholders to understand their needs better. Manuele suggests that POs should frame the problems clearly and not worry about how the team divides the work. When working with a great PO, it feels easy.

The Ultimate Guide to Supporting Product Owners as a Scrum Master

Are you having trouble helping the team work 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 Manuele Piastra

Manuele Piastra moved to London in 2014, which was a life-changing experience for him. He gained access to more sources of learning, worked in fast-paced companies with complex technology stacks and ambitious goals, and developed open-mindedness, patience, and autonomy.

You can link with Manuele Piastra on LinkedIn and connect with Manuele Piastra on Twitter.

Manuele Piastra: The road to success for Scrum Masters includes defining success with your Agile team

In this episode, Manuele shares his perspective on making oneself redundant as an Agile coach or Scrum Master. He disagrees with the idea of completely making oneself redundant, just like a winning coach in football is not fired. Instead, he suggests creating a maturity assessment for the team and involving them in defining success criteria. He emphasizes the importance of not having creating a dependency on the Scrum Master and encourages the team to ask for help in areas they need it. Additionally, he recommends experimenting with different ways to measure success and finding other Scrum Masters to share learning and get feedback.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The Appreciation Retrospective

In this episode, Manuele states that the favorite format depends on various factors, such as the team’s mood and recent events. He expresses a dislike for the overly simplistic “what is good? What was bad?” retrospectives, which can feel like a checkbox exercise. Instead, Manuele prefers to vary the format and sometimes run an appreciation retrospective, where only positives are discussed. Manuele believes it’s important to regularly remind the team of their strengths and focus on improvement while also acknowledging their successes.

How can I, as a Scrum Master, supercharge my facilitation?

Retrospectives, planning sessions, vision workshops, we are continuously helping teams learn about how to collaborate in practice! In this Actionable Agile Tools book, Jeff Campbell shares some of the tools he’s learned over a decade of coaching Agile Teams. The pragmatic coaching book you need, right now! Buy Actionable Agile Tools on Amazon, or directly from the author, and supercharge your facilitation toolbox!

About Manuele Piastra

Manuele Piastra moved to London in 2014, which was a life-changing experience for him. He gained access to more sources of learning, worked in fast-paced companies with complex technology stacks and ambitious goals, and developed open-mindedness, patience, and autonomy.

You can link with Manuele Piastra on LinkedIn and connect with Manuele Piastra on Twitter.

Manuele Piastra: Measuring Progress in Agile Transformation Using a Maturity Tracker

In this episode, Manuele talks about his experience as an external change agent in an organization. He shares some tips on how to start off an engagement the right way. First, he suggests having a conversation with the sponsor to evaluate the assignment. Next, he advises defining what is expected from the team, sponsors, and yourself. He emphasizes the importance of having the sponsor introduce you to the team and doing a boot camp with them. During the boot camp, he tells the team that he’s not there to do their job. He recommends measuring progress by using a tool to track the team’s movement towards agility, such as the Agile Reloaded Maturity Tracker. This helps identify pain points and what needs to change with the help of the coach. Finally, he advises having success criteria and looping and repeating the process.

Want to Improve Your Change Management Results? Discover the Lean Change Management Approach Today!

As Scrum Master we work with change continuously! Do you have your own change framework that provides the guidance, and queues you need when working with change? The Lean Change Management framework is a fully defined, lean-startup inspired change framework that can be used as the backbone of any change process! You can buy Lean Change Management the book at Amazon. Also available in French, Spanish, German and Portuguese.

About Manuele Piastra

Manuele Piastra moved to London in 2014, which was a life-changing experience for him. He gained access to more sources of learning, worked in fast-paced companies with complex technology stacks and ambitious goals, and developed open-mindedness, patience, and autonomy.

You can link with Manuele Piastra on LinkedIn and connect with Manuele Piastra on Twitter.

Manuele Piastra: Challenging the Team, The Scrum Master’s Role as a Change Agent

In this episode, Manuele discusses the role of the Scrum Master and the importance of being a leader rather than just a servant. He identifies several anti-patterns that can arise when a Scrum Master is seen as a personal assistant or secretary, such as being asked to write stories, move stories on the board, or run meetings for the team.

Manuele emphasizes that the Scrum Master is a part of the team and their behavior can have a significant impact on the team’s performance. He also discusses the importance of challenging the team and avoiding the temptation to please team members instead of helping them. Manuele recommends reflecting on whether your actions align with your role as a change agent and asks “What would be the reason for you not to do what you are asking me to do?” as a way to encourage the team to think critically about their approach. Finally, Manuele provides tips for how Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches can work together to drive improvement and disrupt the status quo.

Featured Book of the Week: Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink

In this segment, Manuele recommends the book Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink, which he found himself referring to in many situations. He mentions using the book’s three key motivator factors when designing a workshop or considering what a team might be lacking. Manuele points out that OKRs follow two aspects of the Drive model, Purpose and Autonomy, and suggests that the Drive model is also useful for coaching Product Owners. Although Manuele read the book many years ago, he still finds it relevant and valuable.

Transform Your Agile Teams with Hard-Earned Lessons from Super-Experienced Scrum Masters

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 experience: 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 Manuele Piastra

Manuele Piastra moved to London in 2014, which was a life-changing experience for him. He gained access to more sources of learning, worked in fast-paced companies with complex technology stacks and ambitious goals, and developed open-mindedness, patience, and autonomy.

You can link with Manuele Piastra on LinkedIn and connect with Manuele Piastra on Twitter.

Manuele Piastra: Fighting Against Your Team, The Danger of Blindly Implementing Scrum

In this episode, Manuele discusses his experience working with a mobile team in a scrum environment. He points out that while scrum is a great methodology because it provides structure, teams may sometimes just go through the motions. As time goes by, teams may begin to drop aspects of scrum, leading to the loss of the entire process.

Manuele identifies two ANTI-PATTERNS in which the leadership hires a scrum master without explaining the importance of Agile or Scrum to the team, and in which scrum or agile are superimposed on something else without that thing going away. Manuele failed to recognize the context of the team and was given specific goals to put the team on the path of scrum, leading to a fight between him and the team. He offers some tips for addressing this situation, including stopping the show and having an honest conversation with the team and stakeholders. Finally, he suggests doing personal reflection to determine if you are the right fit for the team.

The inspiring story of how a failing hospital turned things around with Agile and Lean

Recovering from failure, or difficult moments is a critical skill for Scrum Masters. Not only because of us, but also because the teams, and stakeholders we work with will also face these moments! We need inspiring stories to help them, and ourselves! The Bungsu Story, is an inspiring story by Marcus Hammarberg which shows how a Coach can help organizations recover even from the most disastrous situations! Learn how Marcus helped The Bungsu, a hospital in Indonesia, recover from near-bankruptcy, twice! Using Lean and Agile methods to rebuild an organization and a team! An inspiring story you need to know about! Buy the book on Amazon: The Bungsu Story – How Lean and Kanban Saved a Small Hospital in Indonesia. Twice. and Can Help You Reshape Work in Your Company.

About Manuele Piastra

Manuele Piastra moved to London in 2014, which was a life-changing experience for him. He gained access to more sources of learning, worked in fast-paced companies with complex technology stacks and ambitious goals, and developed open-mindedness, patience, and autonomy.

You can link with Manuele Piastra on LinkedIn and connect with Manuele Piastra on Twitter.

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Down-to-earth, hard-earned Scrum Masters lessons and the Tips from the Trenches e-book table of contents, delivered by email
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Internal Conference
Checklist
Internal Conference
Checklist
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Motivate your team with the right metrics, and the right way to visualize and track them. Marcus presents a detailed How-To document based on his experience at The Bungsu Hospital
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
A moving story of how work at the Bungsu Hospital was transformed by a simple tool that you can use to help your team.
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
NEW! FREE Product Owner Mini-Summit
Join us for this new Mini-Summit featuring seven pre-recorded sessions handpicked from our most popular past events.
NEW! FREE Product Owner Mini-Summit
Join us for this new Mini-Summit featuring seven pre-recorded sessions handpicked from our most popular past events.