Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Back to product owners

So what's it take for a product owner to work well?

• Technical people (i.e. former or current developers) can make poor product owners as they can tend to focus on the technical rather than business side of the house.
• Some of the best product owners are those that are very close to the customer.
• A manager may be a poor product owner because they tend to see the product in terms of tasks rather than features.
• Rotating a product owner causes quite a bit of churn. Don’t do it.
• Multiple product owners can be a bad idea unless they can collaborate together. Multiple product owners can be just as bad as multiple managers trying to manage one project.
• Product owners must be organized enough so they have stories ready for the sprint planning session.
• Business analysts can make good product owners as can technical sales people and product trainers.
• Look at the values of the agile manifesto and make sure your product owner can buy into them.
• If multiple stakeholders are involved in the product, you need one product owner to represent them. And that one representative must have the authority to make decisions without constant negotiation of the other stakeholders.