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RE: [agile-usability] Customer vs user

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  • William Pietri
    Hi! Sorry for joining this thread late, but I was on vacation. ... Two small notes: First, I suspect that this use of customer comes from TQM jargon:
    Message 1 of 17 , Dec 3, 2004
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      Hi! Sorry for joining this thread late, but I was on vacation.

      On Wed, 2004-12-01 at 09:48 +1300, Keith Nicholas wrote:
      > I've never liked "customer" as the name for the role in XP. But its
      > hard to come up with a better word.

      Two small notes:

      First, I suspect that this use of "customer" comes from TQM jargon:

      http://quality.org/TQM-MSI/TQM-glossary.html

      I was exposed to this when the University of Michigan's Information
      Technology Division went through a TQM phase. My recollection is hazy,
      but I'm pretty sure the TQM experts involved in that had some sort of
      history with Chrysler.


      Second, I avoid using the term "customer" except with people already
      steeped in XP; because "customer" already has a common meaning, it can
      be confusing.

      Generally the term I use is "product manager". I like this because it
      puts the focus on what we are doing -- making a product for others to
      use. In contrast, terms like "project manager" and "development manager"
      focus more on the methods we use in pursuit of the goal.

      William

      --
      William Pietri <william@...>
    • Charlie Trainor
      I m happy with the term Customer , but if you don t like that I suggest the Scrum role Product Owner . In different situations this might be a Product
      Message 2 of 17 , Dec 4, 2004
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        I'm happy with the term "Customer", but if you don't like that
        I suggest the Scrum role "Product Owner". In different situations
        this might be a Product Manager, an end user, a business expert,
        or even a committee - whoever makes the decisions on what the
        development team builds.

        Currently I'm playing the Product Owner role, even though there
        is also someone with the title of Product Manager, various
        business experts, partners, end users, and other stakeholders.
        I seek input from all of them, and some of them have a lot of
        influence over me, but in the end I'm the single hand on the
        development team's steering wheel.

        Since this is an agile usability list - but I've lost track of the
        original post that started all this - I'll just point out that
        Product Owners need to be able to weigh the costs and benefits of
        usability-related activities, just like other development activities.
        If there is a usability professional available, that person
        would be one of the experts providing input into the decision
        making process. The biggest risk (for me currently, but also
        quite a common problem) is not getting enough feedback from
        end users. But at least it is clear that it will be my fault
        if the usability of the product isn't up to scratch - we can't
        point fingers at each other and wonder who was supposed to
        worry about it.

        - Charlie

        William Pietry wrote:

        > Second, I avoid using the term "customer" except with people already
        > steeped in XP; because "customer" already has a common
        > meaning, it can be confusing.
        >
        > Generally the term I use is "product manager". I like this
        > because it
        > puts the focus on what we are doing -- making a product for
        > others to
        > use. In contrast, terms like "project manager" and
        > "development manager"
        > focus more on the methods we use in pursuit of the goal.
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