Sunday, 04 April 2021 16:48

Signs that you’re doing well in your Agile project. Product Owner says “no”.

Written by Carmen Constantinescu
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Any journey is made of small steps and as Agile Coaches, we need to value and celebrate all the small changes that are leading to the large scale Agile Transformation.

As spring is coming and our hopes for the best are blooming inexplicably sometimes – like the trees in our backyard – I’ve decided to focus myself on creating a list of good signs showing that the agile coaching endeavor is on the right path.

I am a Business Process Consultant with specialization in SAP Activate and Agile methodologies, supporting implementation projects for SAP S/4HANA and SAP Commerce solutions. I have delivered hundreds of hours of trainings on Agile and workshops to SAP customers followed by even more days of coaching on the job, as SCRUM Master or as both Agile Coach and SCRUM Master in the previously mentioned implementation projects.

I’m coaching for agility adoption teams in medium, large and very large size implementation projects in which many of the members are only meeting for the project duration, are coming from several companies and very often, from different countries and cultures. Some of these companies are having already the Agile mindset and are already implementing Agile practices and some are very new to it. I’m working with management, business and technical consultants and the most satisfying moments in my work are when the people I’m coaching to agility are living their “Aha!” moment that pushes them one step further towards agility.

That sudden revelation one has is my indication that we’re doing well in our transformation!

Applying the “build to budget” concept in the Agile implementation project can be quite a complex demand for somebody new with the Product Owner role. In the projects I was part of, the Product Owner role is usually taken by a Business Process Owner, a Business Process Expert or by an IT Lead who is knowledgeable, has enough courage and gets the delegation to decide on the behalf of his company.

If a new User Story appears as needful for the solution or the complexity of an already identified User Story is higher than preliminarily estimated, in a “build to budget” approach means that something needs to be taken out from the backlog to make room, to accommodate and to adapt to the news.

In this case the Product Owner needs to say “no”to a User Story and to the people in his organization

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