Product Owners: What affects execution?
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Product Owners: What affects execution?



I plan to walk through multiple patterns of failure and how product owners are controlled/ liberated by the organizational culture and vice-versa both in start-up environments as well as in medium and ...

I plan to walk through multiple patterns of failure and how product owners are controlled/ liberated by the organizational culture and vice-versa both in start-up environments as well as in medium and large sized organizations.



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Product Owners: What affects execution? Product Owners: What affects execution? Presentation Transcript

  • Agile Product Owners - What Affects Them? -Anupam Kundu (@mydibba)
  • A Short Story of Business and IT
  • Failed Products / Failed Companies17-Sep-11 3 View slide
  • No Hiring Freeze!!!17-Sep-11 4 View slide
  • Who is a Product Manager? …who investigates, selects and develop one or more products for an organization... …Delivers more value than the competition …Creates a sustainable competitive difference …Generates business benefit to the organization Wikipedia
  • World of Product Management strategy, forecasts, budgets, staff, commitments, roadmaps, targets competitive intelligence Executives Field input, market information, priorities, Market feedback requirements, roadmaps, MRDs, Product personas, user stories… Management Mktg & Markets & Development Sales Customers software Segmentation, messages, benefits/features, pricing, qualification, demos… Inspired from Rich Mironov, author of “The Art of Product Management”17-Sep-11 6
  • Product Management in Large Tech Companies Listens to the Market Talks to the Market Builds the Product17-Sep-11 7
  • “We are Agile”Product Managers became Product Owners…who makes decisions aboutwhat the product should do while taking into account whatpeople who make buying decisions actually want... JeffPatton• Assure team is pursuing a common vision• Establish priorities to track business value• Act as ‘the customer’ for developer questions• Work with product management to plan releases• Plan, elaborate and accept user stories and iterations17-Sep-11 8
  • Product Owner Attributes•Subject Matter Expert •Business Advocate – Understand the domain well – Understand the needs of the enough to envision a product organization paying for the software and selects a mix of features that cater to their goals•End-User Advocate •Communicator – Describe the product with – Capable of communicating understanding of users and use, vision and intent to the team and and a product that best serves the stakeholders alike both•Customer Advocate •Decision Maker – Understand the needs of the – Given a variety of conflicting business buying the product and goals and opinions be the final select a mix of features valuable logical decision maker about to the customer what goes into a release 17-Sep-11 9
  • Holistic View of Product Management market information, priorities, requirements, roadmaps, wireframes, personas, user stories build know-how alpha launch, beta testing, minimum viable product,ideas /refinement monitoring and listeningfive whys, product Real-time monitoring,roadmap, forecast, analyze product- alerts, funnel analysis,competitive intelligence, market fit pricing feedback,Stakeholder inputs segmentation
  • Challenge#1: Product Owners’ Influence Spheres Portfolio Division level Strategy objectives and goals Product roadmap and Prioritized product business strategy road map Release What business Product objectives will each Business objectives release achieve? fulfilled by the product What capabilities will Product Vision the release offer? Product life cycle Release plan Sprint Daily Planning story What stories must backlog be included in the Story Details sprint to achieve release objectives? Acceptance Tests Iteration Plan Sprint velocity/capacity17-Sep-11 11
  • Spheres of Influence Symptoms Absentee Product Owner -No clear product vision -Limited interaction and showcases -Too many conflicting priorities
  • Challenge#2: Organizational Model & Culture• Innovation & Risk taking• Stability & Control• Attention to detail• Outcome orientation• People orientation• Team orientation• Aggressiveness
  • Organizational Culture Symptoms Un-empowered Product Owner -Decisions are overridden by other departments and individuals -No power to influence technology or staffing choice -This is the way things get done around here
  • Challenge#3: Business Model Validation
  • Business Model Symptoms•Limited or no engagement by the Product Owner with Strategy team•Too many process / organizational hurdles to get buy-in•No clear product or release vision prepared or shared•Absentee stakeholders•Continually delayed launch dates•Extensive rework just before and after launch 17-Sep-11 16
  • Challenge#4: Arrogant PO17-Sep-11 17
  • Arrogant PO Symptoms•Limited or no engagement with engineering team•Too much hand-waving instead of accepting realities•No respect for any metric•Public reversal of tactical team decisions•Treats humans as machines
  • Connect the Challenges No Business Spheres of Influence Model Validation Organizational Model and Culture Arrogance and Ignorance17-Sep-11 19
  • Connect the Dots No Business Spheres of Influence Model Validation Organizational Model and Culture Arrogance and Ignorance17-Sep-11 20
  • Product Owners in large corporations vs. startupsSlow to move or change vs. Moving fastFocus on process vs. Focus on outcomeRisk averseness vs. Risk adoptionPass the buck vs. Yes, we canLow participation vs. High-impact per personLack of innovation “soul” vs. Pivoting ideas for new marketsExisting business models vs. Searching for new and repeatable ones www.SteveBlank.comNo mentoring vs. Constant learning
  • Thinkdifferently!
  • Corporations getting backinto venture funding -Start-ups -Incubators -Partner Ventures
  • Examples
  • Spawn EntrepreneurialCulture -Value creation through innovation -Enough freedom to fail and grow for everyone - Build leaders
  • Keep focus on businessvalue -Continually balance all stakeholder risks against business value -Execute iteratively and incrementally - Use metric intelligently
  • Build Cross-FunctionalProduct Teams -Harness the intelligence of the whole team -Align authority with responsibility - Align responsibility with capability
  • Kill products with lowvalue to cost ratio -Do not start product enhancements without focusing on value -Terminate or Postpone and make the decision process visible
  • Orchestrate, Don’t Manage
  • Product Centric Development Teams“…high-performing class of “product-centric” developmentteams that characteristically support their company’s valuechain, partner with both their customers and businessstakeholders, and own the business results that theirsoftware delivers… “Forrester Research on Product Centric Development17-Sep-11 30
  • Interesting Trends
  • People-centred than process centred Customer focused Innovation inclined Move fast Respond to feedback Self-organizing High trust Quality obsessed Collective Ownership (sounds like Agile principles)
  • Good Reads
  • Questions??
  • THANK YOUAnupam Kundu, of Two Product Owners( of Product Owners( Best CIO Acceptance Speech( Road-mapping usingAgile Principles(
  • Image Courtesy•Orchestrate, don’t manage (ThoughtWorks Studios)•Build Cross-functional Teams (•Spawn Entrepreneurial Culture (•Business Model Image (Jason Furnell, ThoughtWorks) / Alexander Osterwalder:•Organizational Culture Symptoms (•Focus on Business Value (Life Magazine Photography)•Big Corporations Funding Start-ups (•Lean Start-up Book (•Arrogant Bastard Ale (•Challenge#2:Organization Culture (•Changing Perspectives (• Think Differently (