3 reasons why you need a product owner in your life
The term ‘product owner’ is probably one unfamiliar to many outside the world of Agile development, but it’s a role that can be key in generating all things digital. So, what actually is it? What do product owners do all day and why would everything fall apart without them?
Well, let’s start with what being a product owner actually involves…
A product owner makes up part of the Scrum development team whilst working alongside the Scrum master and developers to produce the digital product. Product owners are responsible for things like defining the scope of the product, owning user stories and scenarios and refining and prioritising the backlog. And that’s just a few of their many tasks…
So, why are product owners so crucial to the development of digital products?
1. Communication, communication, communication
If you hadn’t already figured it out; communication — they’re mad for it. Product owners are the main point of contact through which the client, developers and designers interact and share their ideas. They’re in charge of making sure everyone has the same vision for the product as well as giving out clear requirements for the teams to work from. Without this constant flow of communication, things can get messy. And, let’s face it, that’s something we all want to avoid.
2. It’s all in the decisions
Product owners are the lucky ones on the receiving end of both the teams and the clients long list of wants and needs. And if that’s not enough, they’re then faced with making the call of what should be made the priority. As you can probably imagine, this isn’t always so easy. But, the product owners are the only ones who have all the information needed to make these kinds of decisions. And, if no one was doing this on a day-to-day basis, nothing would ever make any progress!
3. Did someone call for a peace maker?
As with anything in life, it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. Working with lots of people means there’s going to be lots of ideas and these won’t always see eye to eye. So, it’s the product owner’s job to keep everyone happy. This means understanding all of the teams and clients points of view — not just one. After all, someone’s got to keep the peace.
So, although you can say product owners don’t have the easiest role to define, without them we’d all be worse off.
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By Mariel Rubinstein