Product Owner

When following the agile Scrum methodology, the product owner is the key stakeholder and a visionary with the power to share that vision with the team members. The product backlog is the product owner’s main tool for communicating the vision, as it contains a list of the product features in order of their priority for development.

The product owner needs to have a clear understanding of the market, competitors, trends, and the end users. Often the product owner is a lead end user, but it could also be someone in product development and/or marketing.

The product owner provides clear direction to motivate the team, but does not assume a role of a delegator. The team members are best suited to assign tasks for each sprint based on their skills and their understanding of how much work is involved in the development of any particular feature. The product owner develops the list of features in the product backlog and assigns priorities to them, but the team members determine which features they will focus on during each sprint.

When the team members commit to the development of certain features during a sprint, the product owner agrees not to change the requirements during a sprint. Between sprints, adjustments may be made. But during a sprint, the team’s focus must not be disturbed.