This post provides an in-depth look into the eight essential product owner skills needed to successfully manage a project. Learn the skills you need to ensure your project is successful and how to apply them to your own project.
The “Soft Skills” of a product owner will help you to show yourself in your team in top form. Technical ingenuity, on the other hand, provides flawless products in a digital world. Business skills are essential for the product to actually sell itself in the end.
In this article, we take a close look at 8 competencies of a product owner’s skills, which should not be missing in the product owner’s skill set.
A good product owner can show the following skills and skills and practice them every day:
1. Customer relationship | Your customers love you
The A&O is a good relationship with your customer.
Be it your own company as a client or an outside customer, in the end, customer satisfaction decides the success of a product.
The elementary customer skills include
- Above average problem -solving skills – because “problems” finds a customer every day;),
- Clear communication to prevent as many problems as possible,
- Empathy to understand and serve the point of view and pain of the customer side,
- A positive attitude, since not every day is in top form,
- And pronounced time management to avoid stress through planning.
2. storytelling | Stay creative
The ability to tell a great story, a convincing “why?” Is important for the user stories of their product.
User stories are based on an imaginary scenario about actual product users: inside. Since you are responsible for these user examples, you naturally have to use your creative imagination and visualization skills in order to tell them credibly and create clear, implementable processes that can be used in product development.
Generally, a product lives from an exciting and convincing story.
Why should your buyer persona buy the product? Why should the “XTE“ variant of a process be better than the competition?
The technical superiority of your product is undoubtedly crucial at second glance, in the long run – but do not underestimate the first impression with which you or your product inspire and remain in your memory!
3. Conflict resolution | Keep a cool head
Problem-solving and coping with conflict are at the top of the duties of everyone who leads a team or managed several interest groups with different interests.
You have to put it in bias, develop emotional intelligence, and be able to remain objective.
It shouldn’t be a problem for you to effectively convey difficult messages.
Of course, there should be no time to listen to your team. Then always solve conflicts with a view to the product vision.
4. Delegate | Distribute tasks correctly
You cannot take over all roles in an agile development team. And even if – you shouldn’t hold all the reins alone in your hand.
In our article “Do you make these 10 mistakes as a Product Owner?” Find out that some things are better done by another member, for example by a Scrum Master or a project manager.
For example, the Scrum Master has a better overview of the direct structure of the project, and a technical lead has a better technical understanding of the product.
You have to delegate courageously and sensibly. It is important to set clear guidelines to drive the product in the right direction and the desired development.
5. Product know-how | Do you know what you’re talking about?
“Product Owner skills” – the name is the program: You must have a deep knowledge of the product that you want to look after or develop.
Many job advertisements in search of product owner skills require technical knowledge and, above all, hire those who are already familiar with the relevant industry.
Expertise is therefore the main reason that they are (quickly) set and do excellent work as a product owner or product manager for a specific product.
You will probably need more support in other areas of competence that we have listed in this article, which are often less observed in the first selection.
A simple way to get knowledge of a product is on the one hand direct coaching by experts or microlearning. There are several microlearning learning platforms from which you can choose.
Contact your network or your development team to find out which platform is particularly suitable for a specific product.
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6. Agile Mindset | Distribute tasks correctly
Don’t worry – you do not have to be able to show any special “agile” certification. A sheet of paper that says that they have agile skills usually says little about the competence to contribute these skills in everyday life.
Agile working methods are rarely transferred 1: 1 from the textbook to business reality, but we dare to say that an agile mindset is essential for an outstanding product owner.
An agile way of thinking is the basis for
- Continuous improvement and continuous learning
- Harmonious cooperation
- Focus on added value, not on profiling
- Quick adaptability of changes
Make respect for central work ethics and serve your team as a role model by always being respectful of the skills and time of a person.
Agile principles promote and challenge to deal with each other particularly respectfully in the team.
7. Branding | The right focus
The focus on your buyer persona is just as important as your concentration on your brand identity.
Branding is a strong determinant of its business growth. It will simply make the difference between a good and an excellent product.
If you see the need to catch up on the definition of the mission, vision, unique selling point, and other, basic strategies here, you can be sure that you can still develop a lot of potential to set up branding accordingly.
8. Business analysis | The numbers at a glance
What use is a product that nobody wants to use or buy in the end?
Before the project begins, check which parameters you can use to measure the actual value of the product for the customer.
Critical prioritization during product development and uniform analysis and project tools are extremely helpful. Because even if they could perhaps enormously improve the previous skill sets of a product owner through the entire development process of the product, the success of their product will be measured particularly in sales.
Nevertheless, it is in the end the interaction of these 8 core competencies that make you less stressed and successful as a product owner – with pleasure and energy on every further project. Good luck 😉
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