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49832Re: [scrumdevelopment] Having the Product Owner in team Estimation Meetings

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  • Charles Bradley - Scrum Coach, CSM, PSM I
    Jan 12, 2011
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      +1 to Andre's comments.

      • I've never heard of a backlog grooming meeting where the PO was not present (either in person or by phone/video conference, etc).
      • Yes, the Dev Team owns the estimates, and the PO should not try to influence them. 
      • Having a PO or team wanting to "go mostly verbal" can be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on a lot of factors. 
      I would think the key questions about whether to document more or less(in this context) are:
      1.  Is it likely that someone(PO or dev team member) will not remember the "conversation" correctly from now until the backlog item is accepted by the PO?
      2.  If someone doesn't remember the conversation detail, does it take ever take longer than about 60 seconds to get an answer from someone who does remember correctly?

      If you answer Yes to either one, then you should probably document more, but your team should strive to improve verbal communication frequency so that they can eventually document less.

      Either way, you should strive to go more verbal, so long as you can do so without affecting development efficiency and quality.

      I cover some of this in my "User Story Traps" post here(Be sure and see Trap #'s 10-14):
      (Article assumes User Stories for PBI's, but you could apply some of the same principles to other kinds of PBI's)


      From: André Heijstek <andre.heijstek@...>
      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Wed, January 12, 2011 2:02:38 PM
      Subject: Re: [scrumdevelopment] Having the Product Owner in team Estimation Meetings


      Hi Rob,

      Your points are right. Let me add a few thoughts.
      If the PO is not only attending the estimation meetings, but also frequently available to the team during the sprint, then the disadvantage of not-so-well-written user stories is not so big.
      Another risk might be that the PO wants to influence the estimates. Non-technical people who really want to have a feature, and want to pay almost nothing might push the team "this can't be 5 story points, 2 points should be enough to build this!". Obviously, that should not happen. Some PO's get into this behaviour, others do respect the team.

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