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Thorben Pantring: The Micro-Manager PO, And The Impact It Has On Agile Teams

The Great Product Owner: Empowering Teams, The Art of Servant Leadership in Product Ownership

A greatProduct Owner, as described by Thorben, is an outward-facing individual who actively engages with customers, bringing their challenges to the team for collaborative problem-solving. This PO allows the team autonomy, offering ideas without being directive, fostering a collaborative atmosphere in refinement sessions. Engaged in large-scale adoption, this PO excelled as a master collaborator and embraced the servant leadership role. Thorben emphasizes the development team’s centrality in software, debunking the notion of working for the team. This Product Owner embodied customer focus, collaboration, and servant leadership.

The Bad Product Owner: The Micro-Manager PO, And The Impact It Has On Agile Teams

In this segment, Thorben discusses Product Owner (PO) anti-patterns, highlighting issues like focusing on overly detailed feature specs leading to micro-management. This approach stifles openness to feedback and fosters a “just do what I tell you” mentality, making developers passive and hindering communication. This mode of collaboration leads to having pre-defined, upfront designed features with minimal room for adjustments even when problems are found! This pattern ultimately results in deadline-driven development and disengaged developers.

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 Thorben Pantring

Thorben is an experienced Scrum Master & Team Lead in the eCommerce space, showcasing expertise in leadership, LeSS, Scrum, team management, and engineering. With an insatiable desire for learning and a relentless pursuit of progress, Thorben embodies a fervent passion for leadership, agility, and technology.

You can link with Thorben Pantring on LinkedIn.

Thorben Pantring: The Three Dimensions Of Scrum Master Success, Team, Collaboration, and Organization

Thorben outlines success for Scrum Masters in three dimensions: team, collaboration, and organization. Early in the Scrum journey, focusing on the team is vital, emphasizing self-management and shared responsibility. The sprint goal emerges as a powerful tool for team focus. Collaboration between teams is crucial, as he mentions on this week’s Monday episode. For organizational success, Thorben references the sprint review bazaar episode (Wednesday), emphasizing that success encompasses the entire department’s ability to deliver value, narrating an illustrative story of a team focusing on code merging instead of value creation.

Featured Retrospective Format for the Week: The 5 Why’s Retrospective

Thorben’s favored retrospective format thrives on physical presence, fostering collaboration and engagement. Held in a room with snacks, this co-located setting enhances communication, particularly in using the “5 Whys” retrospective. The benefits of in-person interaction, including non-verbal cues, contribute to a richer retrospective experience. When hosting remote sessions, Thorben recommends a shared whiteboard tool like MURAL, and offers tips to maintain attention. Introducing a “Lightning Question” which proved effective in re-engaging participants during remote retrospectives.

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 Thorben Pantring

Thorben is an experienced Scrum Master & Team Lead in the eCommerce space, showcasing expertise in leadership, LeSS, Scrum, team management, and engineering. With an insatiable desire for learning and a relentless pursuit of progress, Thorben embodies a fervent passion for leadership, agility, and technology.

You can link with Thorben Pantring on LinkedIn.

Thorben Pantring: A Stakeholder Engagement Revolution With A Review Bazaar, An Agile Change Story

Thorben discusses a change management challenge involving scheduling multiple sprint reviews for a scaling development effort. Attempting to consolidate reviews into one meeting resulted in decreased stakeholder participation and insufficient feedback. Consulting with Konstantin Ribel (who’s been a guest on the podcast), they conducted some experiments, seeking volunteers via internal Slack. Teams were named for specificity, and experiment learnings were documented, evolving into a company-wide change approach. Over time, the “science fair” of experiments expanded to larger audiences, employing demo environments instead of presentations. The result: a successful review bazaar with up to 100 stakeholders, a vast improvement from their initial few.

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 Thorben Pantring

Thorben is an experienced Scrum Master & Team Lead in the eCommerce space, showcasing expertise in leadership, LeSS, Scrum, team management, and engineering. With an insatiable desire for learning and a relentless pursuit of progress, Thorben embodies a fervent passion for leadership, agility, and technology.

You can link with Thorben Pantring on LinkedIn.

Thorben Pantring: The Team That Learned How To Collaborate, and Avoid the “It’s Not My Job” Anti-Pattern

In a revealing episode, Thorben shares lessons from a team in trouble. The team members worked in isolation, often saying “It’s not my job” and addressing each other by their roles, not by their names. Thorben tried 2 experiments to help the team: a Work in Progress limit of 1 to foster collaboration and a workshop on the “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” Model (inspired by the book by Lencioni) highlighting the need for commitment and accountability. Emphasizing a shared sprint goal, Thorben recommends assessing progress collectively. Eventually, a cultural shift occurred—team members adopted the motto “it’s our job,” fostering collaboration and breaking down role-based barriers.

Featured Book of the Week: “Large Scale Scrum” by Bas Vodde and Craig Larman

Thorben recommends “Large Scale Scrum” by Bas Vodde and Craig Larman as key book for Scrum Masters. Highlighting its practicality, he emphasizes its value in expanding Scrum beyond a single team. The book guides not just development but also incorporates management involvement for successful large-scale Scrum implementation. Thorben praises its emphasis on customer-centric development, making it an essential read for those striving to make agile magic happen.

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 Thorben Pantring

Thorben is an experienced Scrum Master & Team Lead in the eCommerce space, showcasing expertise in leadership, LeSS, Scrum, team management, and engineering. With an insatiable desire for learning and a relentless pursuit of progress, Thorben embodies a fervent passion for leadership, agility, and technology.

You can link with Thorben Pantring on LinkedIn.

Thorben Pantring: Surviving the Scrum Scaling Chaos, Managing a 20-25 Member Team

In this episode, Thorben reflects on a team that had reached a breaking point when it grew to 20+ members. Faced with the overwhelming workload for the Product Owner and Scrum Master, Thorben and his colleagues divided the team into three, only to realize there was no support available. Thorben suggests a Scrum of Scrums for POs and emphasizes the complexity of scaling Scrum. To address the chaos, they divided the product into customer-focused areas and created a single Scrum team for each. Embracing large-scale Scrum, Thorben advises training leadership and using systems thinking to manage multiple teams. The journey involved starting small and incrementally adding teams to the system.

In this episode, we refer to the podcast episodes with Konstantin Ribel.

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 Thorben Pantring

Thorben is an experienced Scrum Master & Team Lead in the eCommerce space, showcasing expertise in leadership, LeSS, Scrum, team management, and engineering. With an insatiable desire for learning and a relentless pursuit of progress, Thorben embodies a fervent passion for leadership, agility, and technology.

You can link with Thorben Pantring on LinkedIn.

Get These Valuable Lessons Today!
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
FREE QUIZ - What's Your Scrum Master Superpower:
(Please join the waitlist to be notified first when this quiz is ready for you).
Unlock Your Leadership Potential & Help Your Team Reach Their Potential
FREE QUIZ - What's Your Scrum Master Superpower:
Unlock Your Leadership Potential & Help Your Team Reach Their Potential (Please join the waitlist to be notified first when this quiz is ready for you).