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How is a Product Manager Different from a Product Owner in Agile?
In the current era, Agile methodology is an essential part of modern software development. It highlights the continued delivery of valuable software to customers, with regular feedback loops to enhance the product. However, in Agile, the roles of product manager & product owner can be confusing to understand.
Here we will discuss the distinctions between a product manager & a product owner in Agile.
The product manager's main task is to define the product vision and strategy. They work closely with stakeholders, including customers, sales teams, marketing teams & development teams. They study market trends, customer needs & competition.
They did all this to decide what new features & functionalities we should add to the product. It is to ensure that the product is delivered by the requirements of the client. They communicate with the development team and prioritize the backlog.
A product owner's main task in Agile development is they focus on maximizing the products' value by prioritizing the backlog. They work with the development squad to confirm that the product backlog is well-defined. Also, they check whether the development team can provide value to the customer continuously.
They are responsible for sharing with the stakeholders to assure that the product is meeting the customer’s needs. They are also responsible for accepting or rejecting the work done by the development team.
Differences Between Product Manager and Product Owner in Agile
Strategic vs. Tactical
The product manager is responsible for preparing the product strategy whereas the product owner is responsible for the practical implementation of that strategy. When the product owner is concentrated on the small details, the product manager is concerned with the big picture.
Focus on the Product vs. Focus on the Backlog
Yes, when it comes to focusing on the product & focus on the backlog, the product owner is concentrated on the product backlog. Whereas, the product manager is involved with the product vision & strategy. The product owner ensures that the development team is working on the highest-priority items in the backlog.
Customer-Facing vs. Team-Facing
The product manager is customer-facing, while the product owner is team-facing. The product manager works with customers & stakeholders to comprehend their needs. While the product owner works with the development team. It is to guarantee that the product meets the client's needs.
When it comes to making decisions regarding the product backlog, the product owner is in charge of it. The product manager is in the charge of making decisions about the overall product plan. The product owner is also responsible for accepting or rejecting the work done by the development team.
Vision vs. Delivery
The product manager defines the product vision & the product owner ensures that the product is submitted according to that vision. The product owner is responsible for ensuring that the development team is delivering value to the customer continuously.
Scope of Responsibility
The product manager has a broader scope of responsibility than the product owner. While the product owner is focused on the product backlog, the product manager is responsible for the entire product lifecycle, from ideation to retirement. It includes defining the product vision, conducting market research, creating a business case & developing a roadmap.
Business vs. Technical Focus
When it comes to different business aspects of the product, such as identifying market opportunities, setting pricing strategies & defining the go-to-market plan, the product manager handles them. The product owner handles the product's technical aspects. The aspects may include product backlog management, development team collaboration & ensuring that the product meets the customer's requirements.
Product managers have a wider range of skills & qualifications than product owners. They have a background in business & marketing & may have an MBA or other advanced degree. Product owners have a more technical background. Most of them have degree in computer science or engineering. However, these qualifications can vary depending on the company & the product being developed.
When it comes to time horizons, product managers & product owners have different times for their work. Product managers have a longer-term focus. They create a product roadmap that works for several months or years. Product owners have a shorter-term focus. They thinking about what features & stories need to be delivered in the next sprint or two.
In conclusion, the roles of a product manager & a product owner in Agile development are different but complementary. Comprehending the differences between the two roles can assist in assuring the product is delivered according to the customer’s needs & expectations.
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