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Product Mastery: From Good to Great Product Ownership Paperback – February 3, 2017
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
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Geoff has done a great job at distilling the soft skills product owners need to succeed. His new book is packed with practical advice to advance your skills and become a truly great product owner.
--Roman Pichler, Author of Strategize and Agile Product Management with Scrum.
Product Mastery is a great book to read if you want to understand how a great Product Owner works. Whether you are hiring a Product Owner or want to be a great Product Owner, the insights that Geoff Watts shares in this book should be your guide.
--Jeff Sutherland, Co-Creator of Scrum and author of Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice The Work in Half the Time
About the Author
Geoff Watts has been a thought leader in the agile development space for many years and his books, trainings and coaching have helped thousands of teams across the world deliver better products more effectively. Geoff is the author of Scrum Mastery: From Good to Great Servant-Leadership and The Coach s Casebook: Mastering The Twelve Traits That Trap Us, a winner of the 2016 International Book Awards. He trains, coaches and mentors product owners, ScrumMasters and leaders.
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As I started reading this book, I was a bit taken aback by Geoff’s “DRIVEN” model for POs: Decisive, Ruthless, Informed, Versatile, Empowering, Negotiable. “Ruthless” is not a term I associate with Geoff and his work. It strikes me as a negative term. But as I read on, the concepts all came together and made sense. Geoff presents a bold vision of what a PO can be, and what she can contribute.
The fictionalized, but still real-life, stories provides a great learning experience. Like many people, I learn best by hearing from people who had the same problem I have – and how they solved it. The stories illustrate the problems and cognitive biases that trap us.
I especially like the powerful questions sprinkled throughout the book. This book will make you question and think about how you can best serve your customers. I appreciate that it delves into common problems such as imposter syndrome. Geoff encourages POs to be brave and believe in themselves. He explains ways to approach difficult conversations.
As a fan of models, I found the ones presented here useful, such as the decision-making matrix, and the matrix of influence. The book also introduces techniques I’ve found extremely helpful, such as the Perfection Game from Jim McCarthy‘s Core Protocols, and user story mapping from Jeff Patton.
An especially interesting part of the book is on difference between customer feedback and customer data, and how to use it. We need to sit up and take notice of the analytical data available to us now. Geoff provides help with leadership skills, what styles are helpful in which situations.
Readers will get ideas for experiments to help their delivery and customer teams achieve shared understanding of features and stories, and find innovative ways to deliver value to the business in a timely way.
Product Mastery is broken down into a simple acronym which stays with you after reading the book. An easy chucking concept to remember the meaning of the term DRIVEN.
I love the real life examples told as stories, as you can picture yourself in the situation with him, and also love that it is actual events he has or others have experienced. It, not just another "How to be a Product Owner" book or article.
The Equator beer is a great example of this.
Kano model is a great approach described in the Informed chapter. This is a great tool for prioritization. Again, I like the use of real life, simple examples Geoff provides. Very easy to understand and follow.
How true is Sunk Cost Fallacy, and the Confirmation bias? These are all very true in the product development industry!
Having read Geoff's previous books, the great thing I love is the coaching theme which is embedded throughout the book through the use of Powerful questions. They really make you think and you quickly relate them to your context and how you would apply them.
This book, along with Geoff's previous book, all inter-relate, so each book in some way connects to the other. As these books are easy to read, equipped with solutions, artifacts to use and some pause and think moments, With the industry DRIVEN by the Product industry I would recommend this to new, intermediate or experienced product development personnel.