Clarify the PO's role in maximizing the work of the Dev Team
Current language: ""The Product Owner is responsible for maximizing the value of the product and the work of the Development Team."
See: https://www.scrum.org/Forums/aft/1152#4917 for how this confuses people.
If it were me, I'd probably say something like: "The Product Owner is responsible for guiding the Development Team through Sprint Goals, the Product Backlog, and other ways, to maximize the value of the product."
I'm afraid that the current language implies that the PO is a Project Manager with accountability for all Scrum Team delivery, including controlling the Dev Team.
The word “confusing” is used. Does that mean that Scrum is not absolutely, incredible clear to everyone who uses it for whatever purpose. That would mean that Scrum is structured to address complex problems what many possible solutions are present.
The Scrum Team’s job, led by the Product Owner and guided by the Scrum Master, is to arrive at the best approach for their product. Who knows, maybe the whole team or organization will participate in this definition of their culture.
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6 commentsComments are closed
Alan Larimer commented
Agreed, this can be a point of confusion and that "guide" is probably not the best word. The way I learned it was linking back to the Manifesto language in maximizing the amount of work not done.
Astrid Krafczyk-Kralitschka commented
Isn´t the PO just maximizing "the value of the work of the Devopment Team" indirectly?
My Interpretation is:
The PO is doing this "value maximizing" implicit by ordering the Product Backlog Items by value and clearly explaining the requirements to fulfill Stakeholder needs. Therefore I would emphasize the point that this is "implicit".
Charles Bradley commented
More examples of confusion around this line in the Scrum Guide:
Charles Bradley commented
Dennis makes a good point, maybe the word "guide" is not necessarily the best word. Maybe something like "...responsible for providing vision to the..."
Karol Grodzicki commented
Actually, it can be interpreted in 3 ways:
1. ...responsible for maximizing the value of product and maximizing the work
2. ... responsible for maximizing the value product and responsible for the work
3. ... maximizing the value of product and value of work
Anyway, it should be fixed.
I would put it: "The Product Owner is responsible for maximising the value of the product and the value of the work of the development team."
But it suggests that these are 2 different values (and in fact it's one value of product created with this work).
Dennis Mansell commented
I agree with the point that this is confusing, however I would change it into two clearer parts (as I do not believe, as suggested above, that the PO is responsible for 'guiding' the DevTeam. Guiding suggests organizing, the DevTeam is supposed to self-organize).
"The Product Owner is responsible for maximising the value of the product and is responsible for maximising the value of the work of the development team."