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RE: [scrumdevelopment] Re: "Product Owner cannot be Scrum Master" Why?

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  • Roy Morien
    Not having an authoritative and knowledgeable user representative , however titled, has been a major source of friction and error and conflict in the past.
    Message 1 of 33 , Jan 21, 2011
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      Not having an authoritative and knowledgeable 'user representative', however titled, has been a major source of friction and error and conflict in the past.
       
      Logically, Product Owner and Scrum Master are two very different beasts, coming from different directions and having often conflicting agendas.
       
      I agree entirely with the sentiment that if the project is not important enough to have a user representative, then it is not important enough to even do.
       
      In my prototyping days I had the experience of presenting a well developed (as in containing a lot of apparently required features) to a user, for whom the system was supposed be developed, and asking him to spend some time checking it out. He promptly informed me that it wasn't his job to check if my system was correct or not, and refused to do it. I did no further work on the project until he did give me the requested feedback, which he never did. The project slid below the waves without a murmur, and nobody missed it. I think this demonstrates the correlation between user involvement and project necessity.
       
      Regards,
      Roy Morien
       

      To: scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
      From: cnett858@...
      Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2011 16:38:39 +0000
      Subject: [scrumdevelopment] Re: "Product Owner cannot be Scrum Master" Why?

       
      >
      > Which one is more difficult to handle would depend on individual capabilities?
      > I do not deny that probably the "SM" and "PO" may be the most difficult to
      > achieve, risky, but is it worth a try, especially in a team which does not have
      > the luxury of specialists in each role?
      >
      It is not a luxury to ask the business to provide a representative that can make day-to-day decisions about the business priorities, is engaged with the Team and has access to important stakeholders. That is actually considered a success factor for delivering a valuable product on-time and within budget. I find if the business cannot identify a person - in Scrum they are called a Product Owner - then perhaps the project does not make business sense and should be deprioritized?

      I am curious to know how many people are on this Team you are considering combining Product Owner and ScrumMaster?

      Carlton


    • wwiedenroth
      Having both roles, PO and SM, combined in one person would lead this person to a huge clash of interests. As a PO he wants to get things done and tries to push
      Message 33 of 33 , Jan 28, 2011
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        Having both roles, PO and SM, combined in one person would lead this person to a huge clash of interests.

        As a PO he wants to get things done and tries to push the team to more stories, more points, more hours, more of everything. He wouldn't have a counterpart stopping him of from changing the sprint-goal. In short he would be free to act as he would like to.

        In his SM role he wants the team work in a sustainable pace and is responsible to ensure the team can concentrate on their commitment.

        You see, it would be very difficult for that person to decide which side he is on. My thesis is almost every person holding both positions would tend to the PO position.


        Regards,
        Wolfgang Wiedenroth
        http://www.agilemanic.com

        --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, Kulbhushan Sharma <kbs_kulbhushan@...> wrote:
        >
        > Hello,
        >
        > The Scrum Guide states that a person can be "Team Member" and "Scrum Master", a
        > "Team Member" and "Product Owner" but emphatically rules out "Scrum Master" and
        > "Product Owner" roles by one person.
        >
        > I understand that all these "role combination" lead to one person being split
        > between two set of duties that are required to be performed. But why does only
        > the "SM & PO" combination find particular mention as not acceptable.
        >
        > Regards,
        >
        > Kulbhushan Sharma
        > http://sharmakulbhushan.blogspot.com
        >
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