Elly Griffith-Ward: How to win the trust of your team as a Product Owner

The Great Product Owner: How to win the trust of your team as a Product Owner

Great Product Owners think about the impact of their work on the team, not only the product. They plan the communication with the team and the stakeholders, and work with the Scrum Master to help facilitate workshops with the team and stakeholders. Over time, and thanks to their openness and honesty, great PO’s win over the trust from the team.

The Bad Product Owner: The project manager PO

Sometimes Product Owners fall into the project management temptation of splitting the work for the team. And in the worst case, they split the work even before the team is involved, or even defined. This approach creates waste, and makes the PO a single point of failure for the team’s success.

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 Elly Griffith-Ward

Elly is an Agile Coach at a major e-commerce company. Previously in user research (and a royal food historian). She aims to 1) improve the experience of work through reducing mental load, improving communication and forming strong teams 2) shift the focus from managing the worker to managing the work by focusing on flow and waste.

You can link with Elly Griffith-Ward on LinkedIn and connect with Elly Griffith-Ward on Twitter.

Caterina Reinker: Lost in the inbox, how Product Owners can lose sight of what matters for the product and the Scrum team!

The Great Product Owner: Thinking BIG, but executing the details together with the team

A great Product Owner is able to change their perspective easily, they are able to talk about “the big vision”, as well as discuss some detailed questions that the team needs to answer when implementing the stories selected for a Sprint. This PO kept a “one pager” with a visual representation of the product roadmap, which helped create a language about the product that helped define direction, and collect feedback from the team, as well as stakeholders.

The Bad Product Owner: Lost in the inbox, how PO’s can lose sight of what matters for the product and the Scrum team!

This PO saw themselves as the project manager. He delegated work to specific team me    mbers, and saw his relationship with stakeholders as one of reporting only. This PO ended up acting like a (broken) telephone between stakeholders and the team. The PO was not able to focus on outcomes, instead focusing on detailed requests that arrived constantly by email and other means.

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 Caterina Reinker

Caterina is a social anthropologist and passionate Scrum Master. She regards organizations like villages – or cities – with their own language, institutions, and explicit and many implicit rules. Caterina works and lives in Germany and helps groups of people, big and small, in their agile journey.

You can link with Caterina Reinker on LinkedIn.

Matthias Kostwein: How Scrum Masters can learn to step back and still help the Scrum team succeed

Matthias shares with us his perspective on what are great, and not-so-great Scrum Masters. His Product Owner perspective helps us understand our work as Scrum Masters from a totally different point of view.

The Great Scrum Master: Learning how to step back and still help the Scrum team succeed

Matthias describes a great Scrum Master as someone that is able to help the team grow, and own their work even when the Scrum Master is not there. We hear about a Scrum Master that was able to reduce their engagement with a team down to 20% of his time, but still help the team succeed. In this segment, Matthias also shares with all the Product Owners out there, what they can expect (and not) from Scrum Masters they work with.

The Bad Scrum Master: When the SM protects the Scrum team far too much!

We know that a Scrum Master must be able to protect their teams. However, that can be too much sometimes. In this segment, we hear about a Scrum Master that was so successful at protecting the team, that they separated the team from the client to the point where collaboration with the client was no longer possible. Especially in consulting/third party software development, the role of the Scrum Master is critical when it comes to building a productive relationship with the client organization.

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 Matthias Kostwein

Matthias is a Project Manager, turned Programmer, turned PO, turned Client Service Director with a varied background in different industries from Mechanical Engineering to IT Agencies. Throughout all of his journey, Agile has been part of his work life, even before he knew what Scrum was.

You can link with Matthias Kostwein on LinkedIn.

Ali Asl: Empathy as a key skill for Scrum Product Owners

The Great Product Owner: Empathy as a key skill for Scrum PO’s

Great Product Owners have empathy for the customer, the organization and the team. As Ali describes it: it’s key to be human! Even if knowledge of the product and the business is very important, knowledge can be acquired, but the skill of empathy is not easy to acquire.

The Bad Product Owner: Cheap and inexperienced, a combination that destroys value for the customer and the company

This company that Ali worked at used to hire graduates as Product Owners. Inevitably, with their lower salaries came a whole host of other problems. The PO’s would not have experience on the product, or the process of developing products and would focus on the wrong things. In this segment, we also discuss how to help Product Owners focus on value and impact.

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 Ali Asl

Ali is an experienced and accomplished Independent Agile Coach, Trainer and Scrum Master focused on supporting organizations and teams in the application of Agile values and principles to deliver quality and value.

You can link with Ali Asl on LinkedIn.

Bert Heymans: The Product Owner that thought they “owned” the team, and what to do about it

The Great Product Owner: Collaborating with the Scrum Master to help the teams succeed.

This PO was able to defend the team in front of others, and also helped the team clarify their questions so that they didn’t have any doubts about their performance. He helped the team with reports and red-tape related tasks and focused on enabling the team to deliver. Finally, great PO’s know how to collaborate with the Scrum Master to help the team succeed.

The Bad Product Owner: The PO that thought they “owned” the team

When Product Owners think they “own the team”, they might change the team’s priorities according to their own personal preferences. When this happens, they might start changing priorities every sprint, micro-manage the team and even bring conflict to the team. In this section, we also talk about a PO that insisted that the team release on a Friday (a well-known anti-pattern). In this segment, we discuss how Scrum Masters can avoid these anti-patterns by deliberately building a great rapport with the PO.

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 Bert Heymans

Bert is a long time Lean Management aficionado and project management tool specialist, along the way he fell in love with business analysis and teaching business analysis techniques. In 2016 he founded Lean Coffee Ghent and has been at it since.

You can link with Bert Heymans on LinkedIn and connect with Bert Heymans on Twitter.

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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
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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
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This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
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This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
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