Leadership hack – the role of Product Owner
In my previous leadership post, I discussed the role of the Chief Product Officer.
In this post, I want to focus on product leadership at the team level. There is much discussion over the what a product owner or product manager does, and if there are differences between the two. While there are many perspectives and frameworks, I have found the book Product Leadership best articulates how I think about people who lead products and product teams.
Product leaders are different from normal business managers, in that they are responsible for co-creating key Agile artefacts with their team and the wider business. For example:
- Principles – what values guide the product or the team, e.g., “keep customer inertia”
- Product vision – what to the team will build e.g., “1000 songs in my pocket”
- Product strategy – how the product will fulfil the vision, for example, key features/actions e.g., import, store, easily access and play music
- Product roadmap – what order these main features will be delivered (based on value, usability and feasibility)
While this is not a universal answer it has helped me as it shows what product leaders do. I now use the term ‘Product Leader’, and have furthered Martin’s thinking which what B ‘Product Leaders’ should be good at:
I have curated a list of books, articles and website that have really helped me. I hope they help you too.
Useful book reviews for product owners:
Useful links for product owners: