Why for Some Product Owners and Stakeholders Agile Is Like Crossing Over to the Twilight Zone (Published at ScrumAlliance)

I’m happy to share with you that I have my first article approved and publish by Scrum Alliance  on 23rd of July 2015.

Its a very interesting topic called “Why for Some Product Owners and Stakeholders Agile Is Like Crossing Over to the Twilight Zone“.

I hope that you like reading this article like I enjoyed writing it.

7 thoughts on “Why for Some Product Owners and Stakeholders Agile Is Like Crossing Over to the Twilight Zone (Published at ScrumAlliance)

  1. Hi! Thank you for this article. I really like that you made a Scrum Guide definition as a base for further discussion – it was really helpful to folow your mindset 🙂
    Although I have some questions about it, just for clarification:
    – What do you mean by “There is no sprint objective.” – what “objective” are you talking about?
    – What does the “proxy product owner” mean to you? That there is one role more to make decisions only?
    – “The product owner uses high-level estimation provided by the team to agree with the stakeholder on the delivery date. This way leads to milestones written in stone. ” – why is it so dangerous? It means that PO shouldn’t estimate at all? Even when he based on the team estimation?

    Thanks a lot!
    Best regards,


    • Hi Maria,

      Many thanks for your feedback, really appreciated.

      For the first question I will quote Roman Pichler when he says that “Sprint goals create focus, facilitate teamwork, and provide the basis an effective sprint planning session. A shared objective guides the development work, encourages creativity, and enables commitment. Teams don’t commit to individual stories in Scrum; they commit to the sprint goal.” – http://www.romanpichler.com/blog/effective-sprint-goals/

      Regarding the Proxy Product Owners is not one more role that make decisions. Instead of that they only write the user stories by Product Owners request without any decision empowerment. Also, any question that the team have they need to confirm with the Product Owner. So in the end I think that they are called Product Owners but the reality is that they are proxies.

      Regarding your last question I truly believe that the estimations should always come from the team even the high level estimation. Don’t forget that they are the best persons to provide this since they are the ones with the knowledge and that possibly are going to do the work. I don’t see any issue to the Product Owner work with the team to get this info since is part of the Scrum Team. He could schedule a quick session were he can explain to the team his vision and ask how much they think that could take (High Level Estimation or Level 0 Estimation). Most of the times the teams use the T-Shirt sizing for this type of estimation. But bigger problem comes hen he communicate this estimation as final to the Stakeholders. Creating a false sense of control and achievement date.

      Hope that this make sense.



      • Great thanks for the answer on the first question – you brought me the great point to explain the team what can be the cause of not having a good sprint goal.

        So the sprint objective means the sprint goal – new term for me – thanks!


  2. I would go further and would not lose time at all with estimation… use the past information to forecast the future… Much more accurate and much less time wasted 😉


    • Hi Luis,

      I agree with you but from my past experience this approach only work well if if you have similar features/projects, as well really mature teams (Performing).
      Instead what happen very often is that projects are not similar and we have teams that are always changing team member making the team passing over and over through the four-stage model as described by Bruce Tuckman’s – http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_86.htm



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