Evelien Acun-Roos: Unfocused, solution-centric, part-time Product Owner, a recipe for failure

In this episode, we share some of the most critical anti-patterns in the Product Owner role.

The Great Product Owner: Constantly seeking to learn

This Product Owner was a “team player”, worked with the team closely, and did not try to establish a position of superiority. The PO made the roadmap visible to all, and was great at involving the stakeholders in product decisions. But the PO did not stop there, and actively searched for training, to learn even more about the Product Owner role!

The Bad Product Owner: Unfocused, solution-centric, part-time Product Owner, a recipe for failure

This Product Owner was not able to focus, the engineering background didn’t help in this case, as the PO was constantly drifting into discuss solutions instead of sharing the “what” and “why” that would help the team find the right solution. But the biggest anti-pattern is when the PO can’t even dedicate their whole time to the role of PO. 

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 Evelien Acun-Roos

Evelien Acun-Roos is an experienced Agile Trainer at Xebia Academy, Professional Scrum Trainer at Scrum.org and a Certified Trainer for “Training from the Back of the Room”.

You can link with Evelien Acun-Roos on LinkedIn and connect with Evelien Acun-Roos on Twitter.

Wouter Gheysen: Physical and emotional distance, the destroyers of the Scrum Product Owner effectiveness

In this episode, we discuss how distance, both physical and otherwise, can help build or destroy the relationship between the Product Owner and the team.

The Great Product Owner: The emotionally available Product Owner

Great Product Owners are emotionally available to the team. That’s the first characteristic we discuss in this episode, where we also explore the role of having a Vision for the product, as well as knowing how to negotiate with stakeholders, and helping the Scrum Master protect the team from interference. 

The Bad Product Owner: Physical and emotional distance, the destroyers of the Product Owner effectiveness

This Product Owner was sitting 5 floors above the team (literally). He was not available for the team to ask questions or interact with. The physical distance a PO builds with their team also transforms into emotional/relationship distance and destroys the collaboration that is so critical. We share some tips on how to overcome that distance between team and 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 Wouter Gheysen

Wouter is a creative generalist with a broad area of interest beyond agility, a focus on people, and working with teams. He is a coach, guide and life long learner with a keen interest in facilitation, design thinking and systemic coaching.

You can link with Wouter Gheysen on LinkedIn and connect with Wouter Gheysen on Twitter

Kamal Hans: The “messenger” Scrum Product Owner

The messages that the PO passes to the team are critical. Even when the PO is being a “messenger” there are different types of messages that they pass to the team. We talk about two contrasting ways to be that “messenger”, one that works, and one that doesn’t

The Great Product Owner: Explaining the “why” of the User Stories

When we describe a great Product Owner, we focus on how they help the team learn about the customer, and “why” they are asked to deliver certain functionality. We also discuss how great PO’s make themselves available to the team when necessary

The Bad Product Owner: The “messenger” Product Owner

This particular PO was acting like a “messenger”. The PO would show up to the meetings and say “we need to deliver this because this executive said so”. There was a lack of Vision or “why” that functionality was being asked for, and that lead to the team feeling disengaged. In this segment, we talk about what a Scrum Master can do in such a situation. 

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 Kamal Hans

Kamal Hans believes people are capable of incredible things if they have the support they need. He is at his best when he gets to connect people with each other and their vision, create a structure of support, build a system to achieve their goals to accomplish bigger things than themselves. As an Agile Coach and disciplined facilitator, he has worked with global organizations like Ericsson, and Bose to name a few. 

You can link with Kamal Hans on LinkedIn and connect with Kamal Hans on Twitter

Nagesh Sharma: The “broken telephone” Product Owner

Communication with the team about the product is one of the key skills for a Product Owner, in this episode we talk about two different types of PO and how their communication affects the teams they work with.

The Great Product Owner: The Product CEO

This particular Product Owner took on the role of the CEO of the product. The PO was able to stand up to ideas coming from higher-ups in the organization because the Vision was clear and articulated. In this segment, we refer to the Create a Compelling Product Vision e-course by the Scrum Master Toolbox Podcast

The Bad Product Owner: The “broken telephone” PO

Sometimes, the PO’s become mere “broken” telephones between other parts of the organization and the team. When that happens, the team misses the direction and Vision for the product, and the messages get mixed up and misscommunicated. In this segment, we refer to the Elevator Pitch template that helps PO’s create a crisp definition of the Vision for the product. 

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 Nagesh Sharma

Nagesh is a Professional Scrum Trainer by Scrum.org, He is Co-Founder & CEO of Flowsphere India. His mission drives him in increasing the joy and accomplishment people feel with agile ways of working. Nagesh is a Management 3.0 & collaboration Superpowers Facilitator. Trained more than 3000 people across the globe and an active speaker at various international conferences.

You can link with Nagesh Sharma on LinkedIn and connect with Nagesh Sharma on Twitter

Rob Cooper: The Product Owner that was “far” from the Scrum team

The relationship between the Product Owner and the team is a critical aspect of the team’s performance. In this episode, we talk about two contrasting perspectives on building that relationship between PO and team.

The Great Product Owner: Deliberately building a relationship with the team

Great PO’s deliberately build a relationship with the team, but always have a clear idea of what the customer needs. Putting those two together, the PO is able to very clear about what they need to do to help the team deliver on the product vision. We also discuss how the PO is very much a leadership role. 

In this segment, we refer to the concept of Lateral Leadership

The Bad Product Owner: The PO that was “far” from the Scrum team

This story starts with a team that had 2 Product Owners. And even if both PO’s were passionate and wanted to do a good job, Rob noticed that the Business PO was very far from the team. In this segment, we discuss how the Product Owner is an “outreach” role, which tries to bring the team and the customer closer together. 

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 Rob Cooper

Rob is a Lead Agile Coach at Sainsbury’s, focusing on how the whole business uses Agility. Rob is an experienced Agile Coach at Enterprise, leadership, and team levels. In this career, he worked with change in organizations using a range of frameworks, including Scrum, Kanban, SAFe & LeSS approaches. He’s experienced in program & Project Management and has helped multiple teams transition from waterfall to Agile. 

You can link with Rob Cooper on LinkedIn.

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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
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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
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
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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