As I set out to discover just what all the buzz is about with Product Owners I thought it’d be best if I first knew how things used to be.
It used to be that Product Managers ran the show. Wikipedia says they would, “work on specific projects that have definite outcomes, are time limited and have to stay within a budget. These roles typically include: planning what work needs to be done, when and who’s going to do it. looking at the risks involved in a particular project and managing these risks.”
Product Owners, on the other hand, “The Scrum product owner is typically a project’s key stakeholder. Part of the product owner responsibilities is to have a vision of what he or she wishes to build, and convey that vision to the scrum team. This is key to successfully starting any agile software development project.”
The Product Owner is primarily responsible for ordering the items in a backlog in accordance with the vision for the product.
It isn’t hard to see why the shift is not easy for some people.
Here is a short clip which demonstrates the difference nicely.