What kind of information would you ask the product owner for to give the scrum team an update on the product and market situation?

What kind of information would you ask the product owner for to give the scrum team an update on the product and market situation?

Welcome to part 14 in our scrum master interview questions series where John McFadyen answers common questions asked of scrum masters in interviews and client engagements.

Sometimes, I’m a little thrown that these are real interview questions. I’m grateful I’m not going to interviews where these kinds of questions are being asked, but let’s give it a crack.

In my experience, the scrum master wouldn’t be asking these kinds of questions of the product owner to begin with. But let’s imagine a scenario where they might.

Intention to help the product owner

The only scenario where I can see a scrum master asking questions about the product in the context of the market performance or wanting an update on the product is to better help that product owner communicate essential information to developers.

A great product owner will help the scrum team, specifically the developers, understand the importance of their role in customer satisfaction and creating competitive advantage for the organization.

Really helping the developers see the big picture and how they contribute to the product goal, product vision, and creating customer satisfaction.

It’s a key part of alignment.

So, I would help the product owner articulate that to the developers and communicate any great customer feedback that can inform where developers invest their time, effort, and creativity next.

A product owner could help the developers achieve a greater sense of purpose by demonstrating how the work they perform, the solutions they create, and the problems they solve actively change the life of customers.

How it helps customers do the jobs that are important to them, how it solves the most compelling problems customers face, and how it helps customers achieve the goals and objectives that matter to them.

Some people aren’t cause driven, but they do respond well to appreciation of their efforts and some insights into how their work is having a significant impact on the lives of others.

So, that could be another area that I could help a product owner focus on to lift morale and inspire the team to new heights.

I’m going to stop there because I think this is a silly question and I’m honestly just reaching to try and answer the question. I sincerely hope you don’t come across this question in an interview, but if you do, maybe go with the warm and fuzzy elements because I imagine that is what the interviewer wants to hear.

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John McFadyen Managing Partner
John McFadyen is an Executive and Enterprise Agile Coach with proven experience working on some of the UK and Europe’s largest, most complex Agile Transformations. As a Certified Scrum Trainer, John brings a wealth of experience as an Agile coach, Agile practitioner and software developer into each of the four core courses he provides. The war stories, the insights into successful Agile transformations and everything he has learned from coaching high-performance Agile teams combine to provide course delegates with a unique, compelling training experience that transforms as much as it empowers.

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