Phillip

Phillip

Does a Product owner need technical skills?

I recently wrote about the core competencies of a Product Owner (PO). Within that text I didn´t address technical skills. This topic is large enough to warrant a dedicated post. Well, here it is. Does a Product Owner (PO) need deep technical understanding to be successful? In my view, the short answer is a clear NO for the vast majority of products. The long answer is a bit more nuanced: it depends. Overall, I do believe that technical understanding for a PO is a net positive. However, it can also lead to some negative outcomes. I will dive into the pros and cons first before addressing some general points.

Deep work: a powerful concept – five takeaways from an inspiring book

have read a few books that had a significant impact on my professional (and personal) life, maybe none more so than “Getting Things Done” by David Allen and “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective people” by Stephen Covey. However, a few months ago, I discovered the work of Cal Newport and read his book “Deep Work”. Its impact on my thinking was and is on par with the classics listed above.

Definition of Ready & Definition of Done – so simple and so powerful

Whenever I start working with a new team, one of the first things we do is defining the Definition of Ready as well as the Definition of Done. Defining and using those two artifacts is not overly complicated but saves all involved from a lot of stress down the road. Nevertheless, I frequently find teams that use neither or don't even know what they are. Thus, I think it makes sense to address what Definition of Done (DOD) and Definition of Ready (DOR) are and why they exist.

Our unreasonable hope that software tools will magically save us

Don´t get me wrong, many software tools are fantastic products. I use a wide variety daily. However, I feel like their impact is overvalued. Or maybe, to put it better, I think they are misused. Far too often is some new license for a tool purchased because “we are not meeting our targets”. The hope is then that the tool magically solves everything. Spoiler alert: It doesn't.