What Makes a Good Product Owner?

Focus has always been on finding a Scrum Master, Scrum Master training and Team Metrics. What about the Product Owner, Product Owner training and metrics related to the product-like release planning?

So let’s look at key characteristics in finding a good product owner:

  • Visionary and Doer -A good Product Owner is informed about the product and will be able to communicate the vision to the team. New to a product? A good Product Owner knows how to utilize the people around him/her to grow his/her product knowledge.
  • Leader and Team Player “The product owner is just such a leader. As the individual responsible for the product’s success, the product owner provides guidance and direction for everyone involved in the development effort and ensures that tough decisions are made.” (Pichler)
  • Communicator and Negotiator- The Product Owner works with various stakeholder from both IT and business and needs to be able to communicate with all parties
  • Empowered to Make Decisions- The Product Owner has to be able to manage the backlog with competing priorities and the integrity of the product  and be the SINGLE VOICE to the team
  • Available to the Team – The Product Owner role is part of a scrum team. He/she must be available to the team answer questions and be the “beacon of light” for the team; driving the vision of the product and sprint goals.
  • Agile and flexible- This is an agile team and we have to be open to changes and learn to adapt and continuously improve!
  • Shares Successes with the Team – Some Product Owners focus on the negative and tend to forget to stay positive with the team – the team looks to the Product Owner and the Scrum Master as their guiders in this journey- Do not forget it is a TEAM SUCCESS!
  • Release Plan- A good Product Owner manages the release plan and is able to communicate this out to stakeholders. A release plan can include the features within a release, percent to completion, forecast to make scheduled release and budget burn down allotted to project or product/program funding against the release plan.

 

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