Engaging a Product Owner on a Government Contract: Challenges and Solutions

Great systems require active, capable Product Owners.  Functional innovation is not possible without their commitment and involvement in the project.  Too often in government contracting, the Product Owner is an Absentee Owner.  Agile Development teams often seek out tools and techniques to create great systems, however too frequently what is holding them back is the lack of an engaged Product Owner. Teams in this situation must face the elephant in the room if they desire to build a system that brings positive change in efficiency, productivity, quality, usefulness, and adoption.  This talk shares solutions I have used for challenges I see again and again on government contracts.

The talk begins with some introductory material on the problem, its causes, what I mean by functional innovation, and why this is required to build great systems.  I describe four challenges with Product Owner engagement that are not unique to government contracting, but that I see recurring on projects: committing staff, procurement practices, role ambiguity, and absentee ownership.

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

Introduction

  • Problem statement and cause
  • What I mean by Functional Innovation and how it is lost without an engaged and capable Product Owner
  • 3 Effects (Waterfall, Contract, and Contractor) that have contributed to this problem

Challenges and Solutions: I share my experience and solutions to four recurring challenges:

  • Committing Staff
  • Procurement Practices
  • Role Ambiguity
  • Absentee Owner

Learning Outcome

Techniques, tips, and experience to address common challenges with engaging product owners    

Target Audience

Scrum Masters, Project Managers

schedule Submitted 3 years ago

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