This talk is my self-reflection as a Product Owner (PO) over the last year and a half. Coming from a technical background where techies “don’t talk much” and “work with their headphones on”, I too was more of a good listener into discussions and spoke only on select occasions. We are always taught to listen first and ask only if you are not clear. Especially in Indian context, asking questions are not encouraged much, and even in colleges profs are happy if you don’t engage them in discussions. And on top of it, if you belong to the tribe of introverts like me then you have had it. A combination of these factors ensured that, I too spoke little and only when needed and banked heavily on my work to do the talking.

If it seems like a familiar script, either of yourself or of somebody you know then I recommend that you attend the session.

This talk is centered on my learning and the move from a silent PO to an assertive PO, the challenges and the opportunities. The role of a PO is very delicate one and the person needs to have a very balanced approach. He/She can’t be a silent observer, and at the same time he/she can’t be an aggressive participant. “Silence is Golden” doesn’t applies to POs and the tribe needs to maintain the balanced communication channels while engaging all the stakeholders for the success of the project and that is what we will be focusing on in this session.

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Outline/structure of the Session

- This session will follow a discussion of the scenario proposed

- It will egg on the participants to contribute and share giving them some comfort in breaking the shackles

- Will share my experiences and what I did to move on to "Highway Number 2" as I like to call it.

Learning Outcome

- "Silence is NOT golden" if you are in the role of Product Owner

- How do you break the shell you find yourself in

- How do you move from a good listener to the one who could lead a discussion comfortably

Target Audience

Product Owner, Product Manager, Project Manager, Business Analyst, Open to All

schedule Submitted 5 years ago

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  • Deepak Dhananjaya
    By Deepak Dhananjaya  ~  2 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Niraj,

     Assertiveness, is one of the key qualities of any person to have healthier discussion. Would invite you to share "how you broke the shell, and what are the ways and challenges you faced while breaking the shell?", that I sense would be a key take away. 

    What do you think?


    • Joel Tosi
      By Joel Tosi  ~  5 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Niraj,

         I hope you are feeling better, please take care of yourself first and foremost.  When you do get to it, don't feel like your presentation needs to be complete. I would be interested in seeing the high points of your session and the general flow.  This is a very interesting submission.




    • Nitin Ramrakhyani
      By Nitin Ramrakhyani  ~  5 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Niraj,

      Thanks for your submission. The topic seems pretty interesting. I feel that not just PO role requires assertiveness, but that's a skill even most of the dev team members can adapt. Alot of times asking the "right" question need not just be done by the PO, but by each and every member of the team, to make a sucessfull product. 

      So I think you should generalize your talk, with more learning outcomes and structure so that it appeals to a larger audience and not just to PO's/ BAs. Have you presented this talk anywhere earlier? Can you point the review team to some of your previous talks/ decks/videos.

      Look forward to hear from you further.



      • Niraj Bhandari
        By Niraj Bhandari  ~  5 years ago
        reply Reply

        Hi Nitin,

        These are some great inputs ! Thanks for sharing your comments, I completely agree with you that a team which is not reluctant to asking questions is one of the major determinants of the success the team has.
        I am working on creating the material for the talk, the first step is to present the talk internally within the organization ( I work as Product Manager with McKinsey & Co) which would be in August-September. The next step is to talk it to community in and around Bangalore between October-December and then is to present in conference early next year if I get an opportunity to do so.
        Please continue to provide your valuable feedback as these will go a long way in improving and fine-tuning the session.
        • Nitin Ramrakhyani
          By Nitin Ramrakhyani  ~  5 years ago
          reply Reply

          Hi Niraj,

          Thanks for your response. As of now, the review team is not able to make up their mind based on the information available on this proposal. We have to weigh it against lot of other proposals that are submitted. Hope you understand.

          Do share the deck or an outline once you have it and any possible update that you may want to make to the abstract/ learning outcomes based on the discussions. We'll then re-assess it again then. 

          Look forward to your updates to make this more appealing to the audience.