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Preferred Product Owner Stances
Product development Scrum

6 Preferred Product Owner Stances to Adapt

Preferred Product Owner Stances

In our previous blog, we discussed six misunderstood product owner stances that should be avoided at any cost. It probably gave you an idea of what you should not do as a product owner so that you make wise decisions and grow. 

Now, it’s time to find out what you should do as a product owner. In this blog, we will discuss about 6 product owner stances which are widely preferred and accepted in a positive light. Let’s begin: 

1. Visionary 

Product owners with the visionary stance have a clear future vision and actively try to challenge the status quo. Team members are inspired to follow them because of their charismatic nature. Steve jobs, Elon Musk, and Thomas Edison are some popular examples of visionary product owners. 

Following are the patterns using which you can identify a visionary product owner: 

  • Envisioning the future and imagining what doesn’t exist today but might someday. 
  • Clear details of the future possibilities and they always aim on the bigger picture.
  • Focusing on “what can be” instead of “what is” – thus always thinking about the future of your product. 
  • Sharing and communicating their vision with others because they know they can’t achieve it alone. 
  • Never being afraid of the failure. 

How does this behaviour affect the product development? 

  • Scrum team always remains on the right track because they know where they are heading. 
  • Visionaries also acts as a unifying force, motivating everyone to work for the same goal. 
  • Visionaries act as a guide for employee actions and decision making. 
  • Visionaries can be motivating and inspiring, thus guiding everyone to perform better. 
  • Since visionaries have a clear vision, the Development teams can build a better product. 
  • The development teams can also learn to be more self-organized under the guidance of visionary product owner. 
  • Visionary product owner can lead to improved product usage, increased revenues, improved total cost of ownership, and increased customer satisfaction

2. The Customer Representative 

Product owners with the customer representative stance are highly concerned about customers and their requirements. Not only they gain every insight about your potential customers, but also understand the team members what customers want, what challenges they have, and what are their pain points. Perhaps, this is the reason why product owners with this stance are highly preferred. 

Following are the patterns to identify the product owners with the customer representative stance: 

  • Great understanding of customers and their persona. 
  • More listening over talking. 
  • Ability to listen, observe, and ask powerful questions to understand your customers. 
  • Identifying customer values and try their best to deliver it. 

How does this behaviour influences product development? 

  • Since customers representative product owners have a great understanding of customers, they can help you and your team a great product. 
  • The development team also learn to be independent and self-organized under customer representative product owners. 
  • They can help you focus on long-term goals. 

3. The Collaborator 

Product owners with the collaborator stance are team players. No matter how efficient they are individually, they prefer to take everyone in the team together. Such product owners believe in lifting up everyone. That’s why this is a widely preferred stance of a product owner. 

You can identify a collaborator product owner by the following patterns: 

  • Open and transparent to their team. 
  • Saying what you do and doing what you say. 
  • Always being eager to share their vision and information. 
  • Listening to understand, not to respond. 
  • Believing in being their authentic self and understanding the other people’s concern. 

How does this behaviour influences product development? 

  • Collaborators improve the flexibility in an organization. 
  • Collaborators help in improving the employee engagement. 
  • Meetings become more productive with collaborator product owners. 
  • Collaborators have a great alignment with stakeholders and thus they can help you build great products. 

4. The decision maker 

Product owners with the decision maker stance help stakeholders in making crucial decisions to keep the time-to-market short.  

Following are the patterns using which you can identify the decision maker product owner stance: 

  • Knowing everything about the product: it’s marketing value, how it is performing right now, and what is its technical state. This helps them make informed decisions. 
  • Not minding calling the shots if there is any emergency. 
  • Always making sure the work gets done but always will be there with the team to make sure they get through if any problem occurs. 
  • Spending a significant time convincing other people of their idea. 
  • Being great team players. Such product owners believe in solving problems together and also value the ideas of other people. 

How does this behaviour influence the product development? 

  • The decision makers promote competitiveness and team spirit among the development team. 
  • The product owners of this stance push employees to their limits and help them grow. 
  • Members of the development team also learns to fearlessly contribute their ideas, thus creating better products. 
  • The stakeholders can rely on these product owners because they are capable of handling many things on their own. 

5. The experimenter  

Product owners with the experimenter stance are the brain behind innovative products. They are great inventors and focus on developing products which are unique. People like Sir Isaac Newton, Nikola Tesla, and Albert Einstein fall in this category. 

Following are the patterns that identify Experimenters: 

  • Stating hypothesis instead of user stories and requirements. 
  • Seeing the work of the team as experiments to discover new and hidden value. 
  • Valuing ideas and inspire their team members to be more innovative. 
  • Never being afraid of failures. Instead, they see them as an opportunity for growth. 
  • Keeping more than one alternative in mind. 
  • Keeping themselves up to date. 

How does this behaviour influence product development?  

  • Under the guidance of these product owners, product increases and costs get reduced significantly. 
  • Product owners with the experimenter stance can offer a better product and service quality to stakeholders. 
  • They can help the development team create the next big thing for stakeholders. 
  • The development team also grows a lot while working under such product owners. 

6. The influencer 

Product owners with the influencer stance have a great influence over the people working with them. They can get things done without even exercising any formal authority over their team members – and perhaps this is the reason product owners with this stance are widely preferred in companies. 

You can identify an influencer product owner stance by the following patterns: 

  • Always being honest and transparent to everyone. 
  • Being compassionate, flexible, and great listeners. 
  • Being great network builders and having the ability to blend reality. 
  • Taking a stand for the team and knowing that the product development is not all about them. 

How does this behaviour influences product development? 

  • Influencer product owners are able to build a united force which can help your company grow in a positive direction. 
  • Influencer product owners have a better alignment with stakeholders, customers, and end-users. Hence, they can support your product to become successful. 
  • There are lesser arguments in the team, lesser discussion delays, and power struggles. So, the product development process never slows down. 

Can we shift from misunderstood to preferred product owner stances? 

Yes, they can. However, doing so requires a major shift in their mindset and personality. They have to change the way they approach issues, interact within the team, and approach shareholders. Doing so is not easy but with proper guidance you can easily get through. 


So, these are six preferred product owner stances you should adopt to successfully meet the expectations of both the development team and the stakeholders.  

Also, it’s not much difficult to shift from one stance to another. With a little mindset shift and a slightly different approach, product owners with misunderstood stance can easily move to the preferred stance. 

At Softobiz, we have been seen our product owners changing their approach from the misunderstood product owner stances to preferred product owner stances and becoming highly productive. So, we can help you with the necessary guidance.  

Contact us to request a free consultation session. 


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