This course is designed to leave delegates more confident in five key areas:
- Understanding the role of the agile product owner.
- Developing a vision and using it to drive value.
- Requirements discovery and analysis.
- Making informed decisions using metrics and data.
- Effective techniques for managing a product backlog.
The agile product owner
We ensure that there is a clear understanding of some basic principles by establishing the parameters and objectives of the agile product owner role:
- Agile principles and frameworks such as Scrum and Kanban.
- Criteria that determine whether a product is successful.
- Accountabilities of the product owner role.
- Interactions with other roles including business analyst; engineer; user experience and design; senior management.
Vision as a tool to drive value
Delegates begin the case study project that spans the full course with a range of inception activities that culminate in a clear vision for the product to be built:
- Defining value as a context-specific measure.
- Start with why – understanding the purpose for the initiative.
- Creating a business model for the proposed product.
- Bringing it all together with a clear product vision.
Requirements discovery and analysis
Before requirements can be discovered, we need to understand the outcomes and set some key performance indicators so that we know what we’re working towards. Delegates will establish these by referring to their vision, and will then run through a workshop exercise based on user story mapping to discover which features might be needed to reach the outcomes set.
Making good prioritisation decisions
Having discovered a range of potential features to build, product owners will order their features into a product backlog and make some initial decisions on the scope for the first release. We’ll explore considerations including value; technical uncertainty; requirements uncertainty; size; dependencies; and cost of delay.
Creating a release plan
Delegates will learn that the assumptions made during inception and discovery are only validated by releasing to real users or customers. We’ll explore how to limit the financial risk while ensuring the first release is coherent and high-quality, as well as establishing what we can legitimately say when the business ask:
- How much will it cost?
- When will it be done?
- What features will be present?
Negotiating, influencing and persuading
Having learned that product owners are the ultimate decision-makers for the direction and strategy of their products, we’ll take a practical look at the techniques required to be effective in what is often a political role:
- Communicating and defending your strategy and the decisions made to enact it.
- Using vision statements to guard against distractions.
- Planning an effective negotiation.
- Working out who your stakeholders are, how involved they should be and how to keep them engaged.
- Striking the right balance between building consensus, and decisive leadership.
Adding depth to your vision
Pragmatic personas allow delegates to get into the context of potential users and build a profile around some key user types in order to better anticipate their needs. Delegates will create personas for their products and identify any additional requirements that come to light.
User stories are a clear, understandable expression of a high-level requirement that enables product owners and stakeholders to take in large feature sets at a glance, and group items quickly into ordered release plans. Delegates will use the pragmatic personas to create truly understandable user stories that enable effective collaboration.
Communicating requirements to development teams
On day one, delegates created a product backlog of requirements with almost no detail on what should be built. We will now explore some techniques that product owners can use to help development teams understand what is wanted. Example mapping with Behaviour-Driven development is a great way to break down user stories by giving examples of how the product should behave in a range of specific scenarios.
Managing a product backlog
There is a lot more to managing a product backlog then simply putting it in order. We wrap up the course with a fully comprehensive review of practical solutions currently in use within the industry:
- Creating date-driven or scope-driven forecasts, and how to manage change with stakeholders.
- Creating a rolling backlog projection for the next 4-8 weeks.
- Product backlog refinement: deciding what to analyse, who should be present and when it should be done.
- Establishing requirements buffers.
- Design sprints will be explained as an option to go even further into validating an idea with users before committing to costly development.
- Feedback metrics post release and using these to adapt the product backlog.
- Using historical performance data such as velocity to make release forecasts and manage budgets.
- Tools such as physical boards and their electronic equivalents including Jira; Team Foundation Server; VersionOne; Trello.
Effective Product Owner Outcomes
Delegates will leave with a fully comprehensive approach to leading the long-term development of valuable products.
This course is especially useful for people who are, or want to become, a product owner. It’s useful if delegates have some prior experience working either with business teams who need products built; or development teams implementing requirements. Typical attendees include:
- Traditional product managers and project managers who are planning to become product owners as part of an agile transformation.
- Established agile product owners who are keen to develop their skills and learn new techniques.
- Business analysts, developers, testers and business representatives who see becoming a product owner as their next career progression.
- Leaders of digital products or departments who are keen to establish a rigorous approach to product management.
When delivered as a private class, the course may be pitched at an appropriate level. For example, experienced teams can quickly re-establish the basics and then spend more time considering the detail of their approach.
We are a friendly team of practitioners and we like to provide a personal level of support, before, during and after the class:
- Pre-course reading designed to expose questions so that they can be explored in class.
- Contact details allowing delegates to ask questions to the trainer before and after the class.
- Access to a comprehensive set of guidance after the course so that delegates apply what has been learnt.
- Digital course effectiveness surveys with results sent out to delegates and sponsors straight after the class.
Duration: 2 days
- Access to Agility in Mind Academy
- Pre-course reading
- Post course reading
- Practise questions
- Trainers contact information
Agility in Mind is a great training experience for me. I am very thankful for all the support provided during the course and all the useful information for my successful exam preparation and passing the exam. The constant support, open communication, site useful content, structured trainings are definitely great ingredients for …
The Live Virtual Classroom was easy to use and has a lot of fun functionality to make the course interesting and interactive for participants
The trainer delivered a 2-day-long Professional Scrum Product Owner course as a live virtual class to me and a group of colleagues and he did an absolutely amazing job. The course was full of great, eye-opening thoughts that put a lot of things in perspective and a lot of great practices that are actually useful in our day-to-da…
We had a lot of open discussions and had great, interactive group activities. The trainer not only managed to deliver in a virtual environment but actually took it to the next level, like using a graphic tablet to underline or circle in key phrases on a slide live. Seems like a small thing, but it actually gives a lot of value
Everything was good, she has organized everything and the session was consist of good materials, slides and team working tools which kept us focused on the session. Her communication is excellent and had a good presentation and good delivery. I learnt alot and enjoyed this traninng, Thank you!
it is my first online class, but the tool like Mural is very helpful for team discussion, very effective as online class
Well paced and good timings. Good, clear delivery from the trainer with a good use of tools and slides available. Core content covered well and good linkage with our organisation/field of work