f I had to think of a time where leadership has enabled great Product Ownership, it would be when I was working in Swiss Postal Services and we had to replace 20 000 Postman and 22 000 devices that were being used for letters and parcels that were basically being processed every day. Now what separated Swiss Post from the rest was that even though it was private, it was still very much linked to the government and so I was quite surprised that they were keen on working in Agile. And so when we came in to start working in Agile, we were given free reins and told to just do whatever it would take to improve the processes of the organization and get them to where they needed to be. I really liked this because oftentimes organizations fail because people are playing the ‘blame game’ and pointing to others and blaming them for this and that. For me this is very counterproductive and doesn’t help get the organization, the product or team to get to where they need to be.
So what our leaders at Swiss Post created was a culture and environment where we could basically apply the Scrum Framework and utilize it to manage and collaborate effectively with the relevant people. Now we could point to people and say what was great and what wasn’t great, and instead of achieving what we wanted in 12 months, the Scrum Framework helped us to achieve them in 10 months. This situation showed me the kind of leadership that is really helpful; the kind that creates clarity, trust and provides clarity on what we are allowed from the get go.
My positive experience working with clients and leaders that allowed us to apply the Scrum Framework, try new things and supported great Product Ownership enabled strength in the following areas:
🚀 Clarity of Vision.
🚀Alignment with Business Goals.
🚀Removal of Obstacles.
🚀Adaptability and Innovation.
Strong leadership serves as the cornerstone for the success of a Product Owner, fostering an environment where they can thrive in their role. Leaders also provide the essential support and guidance necessary for Product Owners to navigate the complex landscape of product development. This support includes clear communication of the company’s vision, alignment of objectives, and resource allocation, all of which help Product Owners make informed decisions and prioritize tasks effectively. Furthermore, strong leadership encourages collaboration, empowers Product Owners to take ownership, and promotes a customer-centric approach, all of which are critical ingredients for crafting products that not only meet but exceed customer expectations.
It’s a Recipe for Success
Ultimately, the symbiotic relationship between strong leadership and effective Product Ownership leads to the creation of exceptional products. These products not only fulfill customer needs and preferences but also align with the broader organizational goals and strategy. In such an environment, Product Owners are not just managers but visionary leaders who drive innovation, embrace challenges, and deliver products that not only succeed in the market but also contribute significantly to the overall success and growth of the organization. The result is a win-win situation, where customers benefit from outstanding products, and the organization strives due to the strategic leadership of its Product Owners.
If you want to learn more about Product Ownership, get in touch with Ralph and he’ll lead the way!