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Scrum Master & Product Owner: Friends or foes? (Part 1)

,,Success it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.ʻʻ


Imagine this situation: you’re working for a company where there’s a need for a change. Easy, refreshing with a whole new approach. The change in your business environment is inevitable and depends on different factors. And, in that position preparing yourself for every modification in career is desirable.


Scrum as a secret spice


And for that reason, Agile world is a place for all who are seeking for a change. Under this Agile umbrella, Scrum is the most used framework (even 81% companies in the world are using Scrum, according to 2019 Scrum Master Trends Report). Impressive?


Scrum is a widely used, agile product development strategy – a set of values, team roles, and procedures used in combination to create work products. Today Scrum is mostly used in the software industry and has expanded to universities, military, and beyond. Actually, the term comes from rugby and refers to the way a team works together when moving the ball across the court. Let’s face it that…


…all comes to what moves and motivates people


Scrum is based on a simple idea: whenever you start a project, you always check if it is going in the right direction and is that really what clients want. In order to accomplish that, you need this – the Team with gigantic THE. What Scrum does is to unite teams to create great things and this means that everyone progressively contributes to its achievement. Exactly like in this picture below:

Scrum asks the team for assortment – in skills, thoughts, and experiences. It wants the teams to be altruistic and self-reliant, but also multifunctional. Teams that can complete the whole project. With support from Scrum Master and Product Owner, this will be a successful and quite inspirational job.


”Scrum is not just about the meetings and schedule. It’s not about Sprints, meetings and having different roles named to fit Scrum roles. It’s not about just being able to say Scrum, ‘cause it’s not a magic word to be used when you need it. Scrum is belonging, trust, commitment and lots of hard and high-quality work…”, Milica Lubinić, Scrum Master


As the main headline suggests, we’re going to look back on two important roles – Scrum Master and Product Owner. And just to be clear – they’re designed to work together on the same project which means that they need each other, not excluding their mutual knowledge, expertise, and experience.

Source: KnowledgeHut



As you can see, they’re completely connected. Both roles have the same objective of adding value to the main project. But, these two are defined very differently from each other. While the Product Owner looks at the project from the customer’s point of view, the Scrum Master focuses on the team and its activities. A Scrum Master’s role is to motivate the team in various ways.


,,Scrum Master and Product Owner roles can relate with Shu Ha Ri, a concept from Japan that explains Scrum as a way of life. Shu state means that you know all rules and forms. By repeating them, you become better. Ha state means after you adopted rules, now you can make innovations, respecting each human being around yourself. After all, Ri state says that you’re your own master with inspiration and motivation ready to accomplish the goal.ʻʻ, Jeff Sutherland: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time

Friends or foes?


They complement each other in current projects. Scrum Master should support the Product Owner in decision and empowerment issues and also help with tools and techniques.  Experienced professionals say that Scrum Master is a mix of the HR manager and Process manager, but on the other hand, Product Owner’s guiding about the business value of the product is priceless. Also, Product Owner should have a global perception of the client’s demand. For these reasons, the Scrum Master needs the Product Owner. And this is one long, unbreakable circle.


Potayto, potatho?


There are crucial differences between their skills and responsibilities, which we’ll present to you through this serial. There’s a thin line between these performances that allow Scrum Masters and Product Owners to be unbreakable buddies. It’s crucial to remember that both roles are important in one project, without any animosity between them.


Let your journey through Scrum roles begins. 😊 


Read more: Scrum Master & Product Owner: Friends or foes? (Part 2)