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Product owner ensures value creation for the customer

Published in Agile

Written by

Suvi Myllykangas
Lean Agile Coach

Suvi is a lean and agile unicorn who loves to help organizations and teams reach their full potential with agile methodologies. Suvi has 7+ years of hands-on experience working with lean and agile, coaching organizations, teams, Scrum Masters, RTEs and Product Owners.

Article

September 27, 2021 · 3 min read time

A product owner’s role is critical in ensuring that the customer perceives the delivered product as valuable. Nitor provided a tailored training solution for a customer to help them develop an entirely new role of a product owner with ease. The cooperation enabled the new product owners to avoid typical pitfalls of product ownership from the start. In four months, prioritisation of work became easier, and work started to flow better through the organisation.

Most organisations are faced with challenges like demanding schedules and challenging prioritization. It can be wearing for employees, and in the worst case, customer work is affected by delayed schedules and simultaneous work.  

Our customer wanted to enhance customer-centricity in their daily business. The goal of the cooperation was to increase the ability to respond to changing customer needs and create value for the customer more quickly. Prioritization had become tricky due to having multiple large projects ongoing at the same time. At portfolio level, there had been many projects with equal importance, which had resulted in employees being tied to several work assignments simultaneously. The need to wait for people to be freed from other work assignments had led to bottlenecks and delays.  

The main objectives of the cooperation were to bring customer needs to the center of the business, clarify roles within the organization and make the work flow more effortlessly. The role of a product owner was created, and the most critical task of this role would be to ensure that the delivered product meets the customer’s holistic needs in the best possible way. The new product managers would own their products entirely from the start and would have the possibility to make decisions about their products independently.

The cooperation started in March 2021 by bringing visibility to current work, which led to the reduction of simultaneous work. According to their new role, the new product owners were trained with Nitor’s Agile Product Owner -course. In addition, the Basics of Agile -course was available for everybody who wanted to increase their knowledge of agile methods. The held courses deepened the understanding of agile practices and clarified what agile means in their organization. 

The training solution for the new product owners consisted of four weekly modules with assignments between the modules to reflect the learned content. Coaching and facilitating a Community of Practice for the customer were also part of the solution. These were part of a digital learning platform, including Miro and Howspace -tools during the cooperation. 

The Community of Practice, which was organized in workshops, provided a way for the new product owners to begin a habit of continuous learning and sharing of knowledge about what works best in their organization. 

Renewing the old way of working made clarifying roles and responsibilities easier, which has had a positive impact on how work flows within the company. A joint understanding of agile and its benefits was created. The completely new role of a product manager was created so that the typical challenges related to the role could be avoided. The new product managers were then equipped with needed skills related to the new role. 

Building a new role of a product manager has played an essential part in increasing the value perceived by the end customer. It has also been a crucial step in making prioritization easier and implementing agile ways of working into the organization. 

The next Agile Product Owner course will take place on September 4th–7th, 2021. If you are interested in the topic, you’ll find more information about the training and can enroll in the course, here

Written by

Suvi Myllykangas
Lean Agile Coach

Suvi is a lean and agile unicorn who loves to help organizations and teams reach their full potential with agile methodologies. Suvi has 7+ years of hands-on experience working with lean and agile, coaching organizations, teams, Scrum Masters, RTEs and Product Owners.

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