Effective Solutions Through Partnership

Defining Roles and Responsibilities as a Certified Scrum Product Owner

Agile, Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), Corporate Training, KAIP Academy, Lean Six Sigma, Learning, Managing/Leadership, Prosci, Scrum, Training, Waterfall, Workforce Development

By Denise Larcade, CSM, CSPO, LSSGB, Prosci

I recently took the Certified Scrum Product Owner course through the KAIP Academy. As you may remember, I also recently took the KAIP Academy’s Lean Six Sigma Green Belt course and have found use for both methods on the project I currently consult on.

Over the years, I have assumed multiple agile/scrum roles on several different teams. I’ve taken on the role of ScrumMaster, Product Owner, and Team Member.

Having been in multiple roles on all kinds of teams, I’ve seen the waters get muddied when it comes to agile. Agile can get watered down or manifest into something unrecognizable. An organization that has managed projects using a waterfall methodology often makes a shift to agile and without proper training and established roles, the methodology can turn into something like “Water-Scrum-Fall,” “Scrum Falls,” or “WaterScrumming.”

Something that was covered in this course was, as a Product Owner, what to do when your stakeholder(s) don’t review the work the team is completing in each sprint. If the stakeholder identifies what they want and gives support for development, then they must be willing to take the time to see the results. As a Product Owner, it is your responsibility to communicate requests of the stakeholder and support the team as they share and present the results. It is difficult for the Product Owner to gain team trust if the stakeholder(s) don’t review the products delivered at the close of each sprint.

As a Product Owner, you have the ability to maximize business outcomes—a key skill for this role is communication. Whether it’s communication with stakeholders or communication with the team, communication is essential to success.

True agile can result in success, but manipulating roles and responsibilities in agile can result in a diminishing return or results. Ultimately, the CSPO training provided both a refresher to CSM and a clear understanding of roles and responsibilities related to scrum. This course helped me to better understand what I know about each role and where I have an opportunity to learn more.

Interested in taking the KAIP Academy’s next Certified Scrum Product Owner course? A list of all our upcoming courses can be found here. Remember, there is no exam associated with becoming a Certified Scrum Product Owner. The 2-day course with Certified Scrum Trainer (via the Scrum Alliance) is all you need to get your CSPO!

About the Author: Denise Larcade is an Organizational Development Consultant and Merger and Acquisitions Expert. She has over 25 years of experience in training, development, and leading companies through organizational change management. Denise has worked in corporate retail, technology, and government healthcare and most recently has experience with large-scale implementations nationwide. She currently works as an Executive Consultant with KAI Partners, Inc., providing client support to one of KAI Partners’ state clients. Denise grew up in the Silicon Valley and relocated to Utah and Idaho before recently returning to her native California roots.

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