Roles and Responsibilities

Which UX Skills should Product Owners and Product Managers have?

20 Jan 2015 3 min read

Providing a great user experience is a must for many digital products, and user experience (UX) design has consequently become prominent in recent years. Does this mean that product owners and product managers should become UX experts? Who should design the UX and which UX skills should product owners and product managers have? Read on to find out my recommendations.

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The Product Owner’s Checklist for the First Sprint

17 Dec 2014 5 min read

Scrum is a popular agile framework for developing a product with the right features and the right technologies. Unfortunately, it does not state the prerequisites for kicking off a Scrum project and for starting the first sprint. As a consequence, I find it not uncommon that product managers and product owners are unsure about the work they should do prior to the first sprint. This post offers a checklist to help you do the right upfront product management work.

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The Product Owner’s Guide to the Sprint Retrospective

17 Jun 2014 4 min read

The sprint retrospective is the key mechanism in Scrum to improve the way people work. Some product owners believe though that they should not attend the meeting, and if they do then only as guests and not as active participants. But the retrospective does not only benefit the development team and the ScrumMaster; it is also an opportunity for the product owner to learn and improve, as this post explains.

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Every Great Product Owner Needs a Great ScrumMaster

26 Mar 2014 3 min read

The product owner and the ScrumMaster are two separate agile roles that complement each other. To do a great job, product owners need a strong ScrumMaster at their side. Unfortunately, I find that there is often a lack of ScrumMasters who can support the product owner. Sometimes there is confusion between the roles, or there is no ScrumMaster at all. This post explains the differences between the two roles, what product owners should expect from their ScrumMaster, and what the ScrumMasters are likely to expect from them.

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The Picasso Product Owner: Balancing Users, Team, and Stakeholders

23 Sep 2013 2 min read

Working as a product owner is fun and challenging at times. One challenge is to balance two separate concerns: the market with the users and their needs, and the company – the team developing the product as well as the internal stakeholders. If one aspect is neglected, the product success is in danger.

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Product Owner Empowerment

10 Jan 2013 3 min read

Playing the product owner role can be challenging: It requires the authority to say no to ideas, request, and feedback in order to achieve product success, as I explain in this article.

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Intuition and Data in Product Management

14 Jun 2012 3 min read

Making the right product decisions is tough. Some product owners trust their intuition, others rely on data. Find out which approach is more helpful to create a successful product.

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The Highlander Principle

8 Feb 2012 2 min read

If you grew up as a teenager in the 1980s like me, you are probably familiar with the quote “There can only be one” from the first Highlander movie. Interestingly, this statement is also true for product owners: There should only be one product owner per product. But don’t worry: You don’t have to become an immortal warrior to understand the Highlander principle. Reading this blog post will do the trick.

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2 Common Ways to Apply the Product Owner Role

25 Oct 2011 3 min read

Applying the product owner role can be challenging, as no two products are the same. While products and projects vary, I have found two common ways to employ the role: Asking the customer or a customer proxy such as a product manager to take on the product owner role. This post discusses when which option is more appropriate.

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The Scrum Product Owner Role on One Page

1 Nov 2010 2 min read

The product owner is a key role in Scrum. But many organisations struggle to effectively apply it. This post wants to help you get it right by providing a concise overview of what it means to be the product owner.

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